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Sigma Nutrition Radio

English, Health / Medicine, 1 season, 528 episodes, 6 days, 6 hours, 54 minutes
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Sigma Nutrition Radio provides unbiased, evidence-based information on nutrition and related areas through interviews with academic researchers, world-class coaches and athletes.
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SNP29: Athletes & Plant-Based Diets – Evidence & Application in Practice

Contemporary society is witnessing a growing interest in, and embracing of, plant-based diets. Numerous athletes are now gravitating towards such dietary choices, motivated by concerns for health, performance or ethics. Consequently, coaches, nutritionists, and other fitness experts find themselves increasingly tasked with guiding athletes who adhere to plant-based diets. For coaches and trainers, understanding the possible impacts of these dietary preferences on athletes’ objectives is paramount, as is devising dietary plans that optimize their performance. This episode discusses the scientific and practical aspects of supporting athletes who have adopted a vegetarian lifestyle and diet. Links: Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Go to episode page - See related episodes Subscribe to Sigma's email newsletter
5/28/202412 minutes, 22 seconds
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#523: How Trustworthy is the Food Frequency Questionnaire in Evaluating Dietary Intake? – Deirdre Tobias, ScD

The Food Frequency Questionnaire (FFQ) stands as a cornerstone in nutritional research, offering valuable insights into dietary patterns and habits over a specified period. Despite its widespread use and established utility, the FFQ has not been immune to criticism, much of which arises from a misunderstanding of its purpose and inherent limitations. At its core, the FFQ is designed to assess the frequency and quantity of food consumption, aiming to capture long-term dietary behaviors rather than precise intake levels. Researchers employ it to investigate relationships between diet and various health outcomes, such as chronic diseases or nutritional deficiencies. However, critics argue that its reliance on self-reported data introduces biases and inaccuracies, leading to potential misestimation of nutrient intake. Additionally, some detractors question the FFQ’s ability to capture sporadic or infrequent dietary choices accurately. Yet, it’s crucial to recognize that the FFQ serves a specific purpose within the realm of nutrition research. While there are no doubt limitations, its strength lies in its ability to capture habitual dietary behaviors over an extended period. Moreover, researchers employ various strategies, such as validation studies and data adjustment techniques, to enhance the FFQ’s reliability and validity. In this episode, world-leading nutrition epidemiologist Dr. Deirdre Tobias discusses the development of the FFQ, the key concepts that are crucial to understand, common criticisms of the FFQ, and how we should evaluate the utility of this tool. Links: Go to episode page (guest biography, links, etc.) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Interested in improving your ability to read nutrition research? Take a look at our course Applied Nutrition Literacy Join the Sigma Nutrition newsletter
5/21/20241 hour, 14 minutes, 52 seconds
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#522: Does Personalized Nutrition Outperform General Dietary Advice?

Links: Subscribe to Premium (15% off this week!) Download detailed study notes and episode transcript Go to episode page About This Episode: “Personalized nutrition” has been promoted as an approach that will improve people’s health by prescribing them specific dietary recommendations based on their own genetic and phenotypic data. The premise is that given we each respond differently to foods, having general dietary recommendations may be doing many people a disservice. And by using an array of personal data, it is now possible to give unique diets that improve health. The early and interesting findings of research in this area was met with much fanfare, and indeed, many companies are now offering commercial direct-to-consumer services based on genetic and physiological testing, followed by “personalized” dietary prescription. Such testing may include genetic tests, microbiome testing, glucose monitoring data, and more. This data is then fed into machine learning algorithms to prescribe dietary recommendations. However, do the marketing claims match the current evidence? Does the “proof” it works that is often cited, actually back up the claims? Do personalized nutrition diets actually lead to improved health outcomes over generic, conventional dietary recommendations? Do personalized nutrition diets lead to better outcomes than standard dietetic/nutrition practice? To answer these questions, we go through the main studies cited in favor of personalized nutrition being superior to typical dietary advice, and see if they indeed support the claims. So is personalized nutrition superior to standard dietary advice? Let’s find out… Note: This was originally a Premium-exclusive episode. If you’d like to get more episodes like this, subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.
5/14/20241 hour, 19 minutes, 55 seconds
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#521: How Does Coffee Impact Our Health?

The relationship between coffee and health is complex, encompassing areas like blood lipids, cardiovascular disease, neurodegenerative diseases, anxiety, and depression. Coffee has an interesting nutrient profile and contains diverse bioactive compounds that influence metabolism. Coffee has a potential impact on cardiovascular disease risk, with mechanisms that highlight potential benefits and some concerns. There may be an impact on blood pressure and blood lipid, but there are important nuances to this. Some research suggests that moderate intake may protect against neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s, with some mechanisms proposed for the observation.  Coffee’s effects on anxiety, depression, and sleep are common talking points and worthy of addressing. The context of the consumption and the individual in question will dictate the likely effects. Ultimately, coffee’s effects on health are influenced by various factors, warranting personalized approaches to consumption. In this episode, Simon Hill puts some questions to Danny Lennon about the impact of coffee on our health. Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium See Sigma's recommended resources Join the Sigma email list Simon's website: The Proof  
5/7/20241 hour, 13 minutes, 35 seconds
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#520: How Exercise Impacts Appetite, Food Intake and Adiposity – James Dorling, PhD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium Join the Sigma email list Go to our recommended resources About This Episode: Have you ever wondered how exercise affects our appetite and energy intake? While we know that single bouts of exercise can create a short-term energy deficit, do they also influence our hunger levels? And what about long-term exercise training? Could it modify our appetite in ways that help us better control our weight? Recent research suggests that exercise may indeed play a role in appetite regulation. Could exercise modify the subjective and homeostatic mediators of appetite in ways that enhance our feelings of fullness after a meal? One of the most fascinating aspects of this research is the variability in responses between individuals. Why do some people experience changes in appetite and energy intake after exercise, while others don’t? Could factors like adiposity, sex, or habitual physical activity levels play a role? In this episode, Dr. James Dorling of the University of Glasgow helps us delve into the evidence surrounding how factors like adiposity, sex, and habitual physical activity modulate our responses to exercise in terms of appetite, energy intake, and appetite-related hormone responses. About The Guest: Dr. James Dorling is a lecturer in Human Nutrition at the University of Glasgow. Dr. Dorling’s research is broadly focused on three areas: (1) the impact of nutrition and physical activity interventions on obesity-related endpoints and biomarkers of aging; (2) the regulators of appetite and eating behaviours; and (3) the changes in appetite and eating behaviours in response to health interventions. During his PhD, he studied the effects of acute exercise and obesity-related single nucleotide polymorphisms on appetite and appetite-related hormones. Following this, Dr. Dorling joined Pennington Biomedical Research Center where he worked as a postdoctoral researcher. His postdoctoral research principally focussed on the influence of calorie restriction and physical activity on weight, markers of aging, and eating behaviours.
4/30/202449 minutes, 26 seconds
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SNP28: How To Eat for Longevity

In a world flooded with claims, advice, and recommendations on how to extend our lifespan, the buzz around various diet approaches, supplement regimens, and lifestyle hacks is deafening. But amidst the noise, one must pause to ponder: Are these claims rooted in science? And perhaps more crucially, are we even asking the right questions or pursuing the correct goals in our quest for longevity? Join us in our upcoming podcast episode as Danny delves into these intriguing questions. Rather than getting lost in the sea of trends and fads, Danny offers his insights on the essential inquiries we should be making. Discover how to shift our focus towards the core factors that genuinely enhance our chances of leading longer, healthier lives. Don’t miss out on this thought-provoking exploration into the science and philosophy behind longevity. Links: Subscribe to Premium Go to SigmaNutrition.com  
4/23/202410 minutes, 10 seconds
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#519: Eating Disorders: Inpatient Treatment & Challenges – Helen West, RD

Acronyms & Terminology: NHS - National Health Service (UK) CAMHS eating disorder unit - Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service Tier 4 Services - CAMHS services are organized through a tiered system. Tier 4 is the highest on the hierarchy and relates to highly specialized or inpatient services. NG Feed - nasogastric (NG) tubes MDT decision - multidisciplinary team (MDT) decision-making CBT-E - Enhanced Cognitive Behaviour Therapy - a “transdiagnostic” treatment for all forms of eating disorder including anorexia nervosa, bulimia nervosa, binge eating disorder and other similar states​. ARFID - Avoidant/restrictive food intake disorder (ARFID) is a feeding or eating disorder in which people avoid eating certain foods, or restrict their diets to the point it ultimately results in nutritional deficiencies. SSCM - Specialist Supportive Clinical Management (SSCM) is a psychotherapy comprising a clinical management focus addressing anorexia nervosa (AN) symptoms and a supportive therapy component. Links: Subscribe to Premium Go to episode page About This Episode: When exploring the landscape of eating disorder treatment and research, several crucial topics emerge, each shedding light on different aspects of this complex field. Firstly, the practice of nasogastric feeding under restraint raises ethical questions and considerations. How do healthcare professionals navigate the balance between ensuring adequate nutrition and respecting the autonomy and dignity of patients? What are the potential implications and risks associated with this practice? Progress in understanding and treating eating disorders has evolved significantly over the years, yet challenges persist in translating research findings into effective clinical practice. How can advancements in genetics, neurobiology, and psychology inform more personalized and holistic treatment approaches? What barriers hinder the implementation of evidence-based practices within healthcare settings? An essential aspect of eating disorder treatment is understanding what “recovery” truly means. Beyond weight restoration, what factors contribute to a meaningful and sustainable recovery journey? How can healthcare professionals support individuals in achieving their unique goals and aspirations for recovery? Improving services and introducing better treatment options requires a nuanced understanding of the complexities inherent in eating disorders. How can healthcare systems prioritize patient-centered care and tailor interventions to meet the diverse needs of individuals affected by eating disorders? What strategies can be employed to address systemic challenges and foster positive change within healthcare settings? In addressing these questions and navigating the complexities of eating disorder treatment and research, expertise and insights from seasoned professionals are invaluable. In this episode Helen West, an Advanced Specialist Eating Disorders Dietitian with over 12 years of clinical experience, discusses her experience and understanding of these areas. With her extensive background and expertise, Helen offers valuable perspectives in tackling these critical topics within the realm of eating disorder treatment and research.
4/16/202447 minutes, 58 seconds
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#518: Nutritional Geometry, Philosophy of Science & A Case for Reductionism – Prof. David Raubenheimer & Jonathan Sholl, PhD

Links: Course: Applied Nutrition Literacy Subscribe to Premium Go to episode page (study links, bio, etc.) About This Episode: There has been much debate about the role of nutritional reductionism in research. This approach generally aims to study diet’s effects by breaking down the intricate web of dietary factors into smaller, more manageable components. But critics have asked does this approach truly capture the full picture of nutrition’s influence on our well-being? In an attempt to help answer research questions there has been a proposal for the use of “nutritional geometry”, a framework that delves into the multidimensional relationships between nutrients and their effects on organisms. Within this framework, the protein leverage hypothesis emerges, proposing that our bodies prioritize protein intake and adjust food consumption accordingly. But how does this theory fit into the broader spectrum of nutrition science, and what implications does it hold for understanding and managing our diets? Additionally, as aim to do better nutrition research, we are met with philosophical questions that challenge traditional reductionist views. Is it enough to simply dissect foods into their nutrient components, or do we need a more holistic understanding of dietary patterns and their impact on health? In this episode, Prof. David Raubenheimer and Dr. Jonathan Sholl discuss the need to have an approach where science meets philosophy, and where reductionism meets synthesis. And we dive into ideas they have proposed that make a defense of some aspects of reductionism.
4/9/20241 hour, 20 minutes, 22 seconds
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#517: Reflecting on Ten Years of Lessons

Links: Enroll in our new course! Go to episode page Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium About This Episode: Sigma Nutrition is ten years old this week! Over this time, I’m grateful for a wealth of insights garnered from interviews with some of the brightest minds in the field of evidence-based nutrition science. Through these conversations, I’ve come to understand the critical underpinnings of scientific thinking, the importance of honing our critical appraisal skills, and the crucial distinction between accurate dissemination of information and misleading “half-truths”.
4/3/202438 minutes, 5 seconds
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#516: How to Read Nutrition Studies (Become Confident in Critically Appraising Research)

Links: COURSE: Applied Nutrition Literacy Episode page About This Episode: Navigating the vast landscape of research literature, particularly in the realm of nutrition science, presents numerous challenges for readers seeking to extract meaningful insights. Before diving into research papers, individuals should have a precise understanding of the specific questions they seek to address. Without this clarity, there is a risk of wasting time on irrelevant studies or misinterpreting findings. Furthermore, the selective approach to sourcing research is crucial. With countless studies available, employing heuristic strategies to filter out irrelevant ones and prioritize those aligned with research goals is essential. Effectively reading nutrition studies requires a nuanced understanding of statistical concepts and methodologies used in various studies. Developing this understanding can be challenging, especially for individuals without a background in statistics or research methodology. How can individuals effectively navigate the vast volume of research literature to find studies relevant to their interests or research objectives? What are some common pitfalls to avoid when reading and interpreting nutrition science research? What role do external influences, such as media coverage or recommendations from experts, play in shaping perceptions of research findings? Are there specific strategies or tools that people can use to streamline their research process and optimize their time spent reading research papers? In this episode, we discuss all these issues. Course syllabus: Applied Nutrition Literacy
3/27/20241 hour, 13 minutes, 2 seconds
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it's finally here...

Join the email list here. Applied Nutrition Literacy Core Modules: Being a Scientific Thinker How to Read Research Effectively to Inform Practice Becoming Comfortable with Common Statistical Methods Considerations for Interpreting Nutrition Research Nutritional Epidemiology Randomised Controlled Trials and Mendelian Randomisation Meta-Analysis Mechanistic Research and Animal Models Enrollment opens on Wednesday March 27.  
3/25/20244 minutes, 33 seconds
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AMA: Do Low-carbers Need Less Vitmain C? Does Omega-3 Supplementation Actually Benefit Us? & More (SNP 27)

Questions Answered in This Episode: [01:22] Do “low-carbers” need less vitamin C? [14.56] If you were to advise a company to establish solid workplace health fundamentals, what would you tell them? [26.20] Which compounds typically found in animal products would be interesting to supplement for health and performance purposes in vegan/vegetarian populations? [40.09] In omega 3 supplementation studies it isn’t common to see a baseline measurement of omega 3 index. Why? [44.10] What is your process for preparing for a podcast and choosing topics? [49.53] Based on the current understanding, what is the most ideal diet for people to eat? [55.26] Is there any evidence that otherwise healthy people should be consuming Omega 3 supplements? This is a preview of is one of our Premium-exclusive AMA (ask me anything) episodes, where we answer questions submitted by Premium subscribers. To listen to the full episode, you’ll need to be a Premium subscriber and access the episode on the private Premium feed.  
3/19/202412 minutes, 26 seconds
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#515: Does Dietary Fat Quality Causally Affect Atherosclerosis Risk? – Jacob Christensen, PhD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium See recommended resources Receive the Sigma email newsletter About This Episode: The question of whether dietary fat quality causally affects atherosclerosis risk has been a subject of extensive research and debate within the field of nutrition and cardiovascular health. Atherosclerosis, the build-up of plaque in arteries, is a key factor in the development of cardiovascular diseases, including heart attacks and strokes. Traditionally, dietary fat has been implicated in contributing to atherosclerosis, with a focus on reducing overall fat intake. However, recent studies have shifted the focus towards the quality of dietary fats rather than their quantity. Not all fats are created equal, and researchers are now paying closer attention to the types of fats consumed in the diet. Saturated fats, commonly found in animal products and some tropical oils, have long been associated with increased cholesterol levels and atherosclerosis. On the other hand, unsaturated fats, including monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats found in olive oil, nuts, and fish, have been linked to potential cardiovascular benefits. Research suggests that replacing saturated fats with unsaturated fats may have a positive impact on blood lipid profiles and reduce the risk of atherosclerosis. Additionally, genetic factors and individual responses to different fats may play a role in how dietary fats impact atherosclerosis risk. In this episode, Dr. Jacob Christensen discusses the research in this area and some conclusions about whether we can say dietary fat quality causally increases atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) risk. This includes looking at the relationship between low-density lipoprotein (LDL) particles and ASCVD, the link between dietary fat quality and LDL particles, and then finally the relationship between dietary fat quality, LDL particles, and ASCVD. About the Guest: Jacob J. Christensen is a clinical dietitian and researcher at University of Oslo. His research interests include cardiovascular diseases, lipid metabolism, nutrition, genomics and data science.
3/12/20241 hour, 14 minutes, 51 seconds
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#514: Plant-derived Fatty Acids – Ella Baker, PhD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium Join the Sigma mailing list Sigma's Recommended Resources About This Episode: There is a lot of interesting research going on related to plant-derived fatty acids, owing to their potential to help improve health and provide sustainable alternatives to other sources of healthy-promoting fatty acids. In addition to work looking at the long-investigated alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), some research is now starting to look at more novel fatty acids like stearidonic acid (SDA), and pinolenic acid (PLA), each presenting unique structures and potential benefits within various plant sources. One intriguing focal point is Ahiflower oil, a distinctive source that harbors both ALA and SDA. In this episode, Dr. Ella Baker of the University of Southampton discusses some of the science behind plant-derived fatty acids, offering a deeper understanding of their distinctive qualities, conversion pathways, and the captivating interplay between omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Dr. Baker’s research to date focuses on the metabolism, functionality, and underlying mechanisms of action of plant-derived fatty acids. Her interests include novel plant-derived fatty acids and exploring the effects on membrane structure and function.
3/5/202433 minutes, 22 seconds
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#513: Kidney Stones & Diet – Deepa Kariyawasam, RD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium Sigma's recommended resources Join our email newsletter for free About This Episode: Kidney stones, crystalline deposits formed within the kidneys, present a formidable challenge to individuals grappling with their debilitating effects. These mineral accumulations, though small in size, can inflict significant pain and discomfort as they navigate through the urinary tract. Understanding the nuances of dietary management and treatment for kidney stones is crucial for those seeking relief and prevention. What makes this subject particularly intricate is the diversity of kidney stones – a mosaic of compositions ranging from calcium oxalate to uric acid. Recognizing that not all kidney stones are created equal, dietitians and renal specialists tailor their recommendations to address the specific nature of the stones, unveiling a spectrum of dietary strategies that aim to alleviate symptoms and impede the recurrence of these insidious formations. In this episode, specialist renal dietitian Deepa Kariyawasam brings us through the main causes of kidney stones, the potential dietary interventions, and how to guide individuals toward personalized pathways for kidney stone management.
2/27/202431 minutes, 25 seconds
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What are Dietary Reference Intakes? Origins, Development & Use (SNP 26)

Acronyms: RDA = Recommended Dietary Allowance  AI = Adequate Intake  UL = Tolerable Upper Intake Level  EAR = Estimated Average Requirement About This Episode: Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) are a set of nutrient reference values, developed in the US, that are used to assess and plan the nutrient intake of healthy individuals. They provide guidelines for the recommended amounts of various nutrients to maintain health and prevent deficiencies or excesses. Different countries may have their own sets of dietary reference values or guidelines that serve similar purposes but may be named differently. DRIs include several different reference values: Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) Adequate Intake (AI) Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL) Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) DRIs play a crucial role in nutrition and public health for several reasons. DRIs provide specific recommendations for the intake of essential nutrients, helping individuals and health professionals understand the amounts needed to maintain good health. By establishing RDAs and ULs, DRIs help prevent nutrient deficiencies and toxicity, ensuring that individuals consume an appropriate range of nutrients. Governments and health organizations use DRIs to develop public health policies, nutrition programs, and guidelines for food fortification to improve the overall health of populations. For nutrition professionals, understanding DRIs is essential as it forms the basis for assessing and planning dietary recommendations for individuals and populations.   Note: This episode is one of our Premium-exclusive episodes. To listen to the full episode, you’ll need to be a Premium subscriber and access the episode on the private Premium feed. Otherwise, you can hear a preview of the episode above or on the public feed of the podcast.   Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
2/20/202410 minutes, 52 seconds
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#512: Alzheimer’s Disease – Drs. Ayesha & Dean Sherzai

Links: Go to episode page (with episode resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Get the Sigma email newsletter See Sigma's recommended resources About This Episode: Alzheimer’s disease has a profound impact on individuals, families, and societies worldwide. As a progressive neurodegenerative disease, it not only robs individuals of their cognitive abilities but also places an immense emotional and economic burden on caregivers. Mechanistically, the causes of Alzheimer’s are incredibly complex and not fully understood. And in terms of treatment, the landscape appears challenging. Drug discovery efforts for dementias, including Alzheimer’s, have faced setbacks, leaving a void in effective treatments. Consequently, attention has shifted toward preventive strategies, including dietary patterns. From a prevention standpoint, both genetics and lifestyle should be considered. Which throws up many interesting questions… To what extent do genetic factors contribute to Alzheimer’s risk compared to lifestyle choices, and how does this interaction influence disease development? What role does lifestyle play in Alzheimer’s risk, and is there evidence supporting the influence of specific nutrients on cognitive health? How do diet patterns impact Alzheimer’s risk? Are there discernible risk differences associated with specific dietary choices, and how do these interact with genetic factors, such as the ApoE genotype? In this episode, Drs. Ayesha Sherzai and Dean Sherzai are on the podcast to answer these questions and discuss this topic in more depth. About The Guests: Dr. Ayesha Sherzai is a neurologist and co-director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Program at Loma Linda University, where she leads the Lifestyle Program for the Prevention of Neurological Diseases. She completed a dual training in Preventative Medicine and Neurology at Loma Linda University, and a fellowship in Vascular Neurology and Epidemiology at Columbia University. She is also a trained plant-based culinary artist. Dr. Dean Sherzai is co-director of the Alzheimer’s Prevention Program at Loma Linda University. Dean trained in Neurology at Georgetown University School of Medicine, and completed fellowships in neurodegenerative diseases and dementia at the National Institutes of Health and UC San Diego. He also holds a PhD in Healthcare Leadership with a focus on community health from Andrews University.
2/13/20241 hour, 10 minutes, 7 seconds
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#511: Null By Design – When “No Effect” Doesn’t Mean No Effect

Links: Go to episode page (with episode resources) Subscribe to Premium Receive the Sigma Nutrition newsletter About This Episode: Numerous nutrition studies present findings of “no effect,” but interpreting such results requires caution. A null finding, indicating an absence of impact from a nutrient or exposure, may not necessarily suggest a lack of effect overall. Instead, it could stem from issues related to the study’s design, the nature of the exposure, or participant characteristics. We’ve often referred to such studies as being “null by design”. These studies, often termed “null by design,” may yield inconclusive results due to insufficient contrast in exposure levels to reveal a significant effect size. Additionally, participants’ baseline nutrient status or intake can contribute to false negatives. For instance, if a study provides a nutrient to individuals already replete in that nutrient, it may lead to an erroneous conclusion. This phenomenon can be understood by considering the bell curve of activity for a nutrient. Moreover, a lack of methodological rigor can generate ‘false negatives.’ If previous literature indicates associations between high intake of a specific food or nutrient and certain outcomes, a study comparing levels of intake well below that threshold may produce a misleading result. Some challenges arise from an overly reductionist perspective. In disease processes, reductionism simplifies diseases to a single primary source at the cellular and molecular level. This perspective assumes that if a nutrient shows a relationship with health or disease outcomes at a population level, its biological activity should manifest in isolation. However, applying such assumptions to exposures like diet may not be tenable. In this discussion, we delve into the concept of “null by design” and present three specific studies with null findings, emphasizing the need for careful interpretation.
2/6/202454 minutes, 49 seconds
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#510: Social Comparison: Evidence on its Impacts & What We Can Do – Shannon Beer

Links: Go to episode page (with supporting links/resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Learn more about Sigma Nutrition Crushing Comparisons course About This Episode: Social comparison theory, developed by psychologist Leon Festinger in the 1950s, posits that individuals determine their own social and personal worth based on how they stack up against others. This theory suggests that people engage in social comparisons to evaluate their abilities, opinions, and attributes, often choosing relevant others for comparison. In the realm of body image and self-perception, social comparison theory becomes particularly pertinent, as individuals tend to assess their own bodies in relation to societal ideals and the bodies of others. This process of comparison can have profound implications for body dissatisfaction and the development of disordered eating patterns. This raises thought-provoking questions about the impact of social comparison theory on body image and eating behaviors. In this episode, Shannon Beer explores these questions and offers valuable insights into the complex interplay between societal influences, individual perceptions, and the development of body dissatisfaction and disordered eating. About The Guest: Shannon Beer is a registered nutritionist, health and confidence coach and certified Compassionate Mind Training facilitator. Shannon works with people aiming to improve their health through facilitating lasting behaviour change in their approach to diet, exercise and body image. She has developed a coaching framework that applies motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral coaching, and acceptance and commitment therapy-aligned processes in a client-centered alliance toward their own values-based goals.
1/30/202457 minutes, 28 seconds
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AMA: Coconut Oil, Raw Oats, Collagen, & More! (SNP 25)

Questions Answered in This Epsiode: [02:16] How would you implement a calorie surplus for “bulking” in healthy trainees without compromising their health markers? [15:25] If you were to advise someone with a heavy workload and busy schedule on how to establish the 80/20 of a healthy lifestyle, what would you tell them? [24:36] Is coconut oil good or bad? What about claims that it cures cancer, Alzheimer’s, etc.? [33:25] In the circumstance in which an individual has a normal ApoB yet an elevated LDL particle number, which value is more representative of risk? [41:39] Should you supplement in order to reach 100% of RDA for micronutrients? [46:35] Are raw oats a good ingredient to add to smoothies? Do they need to be cooked? [51:58] Is there any research supporting whether or not diet really impacts oral thrush? [55:21] Is there any benefit to supplemental collagen? Note: This is a Premium-exclusive “ask me anything” episode. You can access the full episode as a Premium subscriber. Join here.
1/23/202412 minutes, 26 seconds
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#509: Helping Clients & Patients Overcome Nutrition Confusion – Jono Steedman, APD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium Sigma's recommended resources Bite Me Nutrition – Australia Instagram: @jonosteedman @dannylennon_sigma About This Episode: There is no shortage of misleading, confusing and even dangerous nutrition information on the internet. And, unfortunately, much of it can sound very convincing and appealing to people who wish to improve their health. The result can be that they may end up ironically doing the opposite. At an individual level, dietitians and medical practitioners end up having to work with patients who have heard incorrect information or who have been following poor advice. What issues does this present? What is the most productive way to help patients and clients in this situation? How can we help give better information while also listening and caring for the patient? To discuss such questions, dietitian Jonathan Steedman is on the podcast to share his experiences and approaches to spreading evidence-based information in a palatable and productive manner. About The Guest: Jonathan Steedman is an Acredited Practising Dietitian (APD) in Australia. He currently works with patientes via telehealth services. He is well-known on social media for explaining confusing nutrition topics in a way that is understandable and engaging for the general population.
1/16/202444 minutes, 41 seconds
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#508: Why Athletes Can Achieve High Performance During an Energy Deficit – Jose Areta, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with study links) Subscribe to Premium Sigma's recommended resources Get our weekly email newsletter About This Episode: Insufficient energy availability can significantly disrupt normal hormonal, metabolic, and physiological processes, prompting the body to initiate a coordinated response aimed at conserving energy. While commonly viewed as beneficial for weight loss and managing cardiometabolic conditions in the current obesity epidemic, chronic energy deficiency in the context of modern sports and exercise nutrition is linked to adverse health outcomes and diminished athletic performance. Nevertheless, the evidence regarding the negative impact of energy deficit on physical capacity and sports performance is not entirely clear. Although severe energy deficiency can impair physical capacity, it’s noteworthy that humans can enhance aerobic fitness and strength even in the presence of significant energy deficits. Strikingly, many elite athletes compete at the highest levels despite displaying evident signs of energy deficiency. This raises intriguing questions about how the human body adapts to energy deficits, challenging conventional views on the relationship between energy availability and athletic prowess. To discuss some potential reasons for this ability to maintain peak physical performance while suppressing energetically demanding physiological traits, researcher Dr. Jose Areta of LJMU is on the podcast to discuss his work in this area. About The Guest: Dr. José Areta currently works as a lecturer in Sports Nutrition and Metabolism at the School of Sport and Exercise Sciences at LJMU. José’s primary interest is in the area of training-nutrient interactions in humans. In other words, he investigates how to manipulate ingestion of carbohydrates, fat and protein around training to optimise physical performance and health. The outputs of his research have not only expanded the knowledge of the field but had significant impact and influence on determining current dietary recommendations and practices world-wide. His work has provided novel insights in relation to the amount, timing, quantity and distribution of carbohydrates, fat and protein and dietary supplements around training. Over the last few years José has been developing his research in the area of the endocrinological, metabolic and physiological effects of energy restriction, in which he is currently growing his research team and capability.
1/9/202445 minutes, 8 seconds
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#507: Does a Higher Portfolio Diet Score Reduce Heart Disease? – Andrea Glenn, PhD

Links:  Episode page (with study links) Subscribe to Premium Join Sigma email newsletter About This Episode: The Portfolio diet is a nutritional approach that has garnered attention for its ability to reduce blood lipids and thus improve cardiovascular health. While past intervention trials have demonstrated significant reductions in blood lipids, a critical aspect often overlooked is the long-term impact, both in terms of adherence and disease outcomes. A recent study aimed to address this by looking at disease risk across three cohorts: the Nurses’ Health Study I, Nurses’ Health Study II, and the Health Professionals Follow-up Study. The study made use of a Portfolio Diet Score (PDS), a comprehensive metric that evaluates the diet’s efficacy based on specific components. These components include positive rankings for plant proteins (especially from legumes), nuts and seeds, viscous fiber sources, phytosterols (mg/day), and plant monounsaturated fat sources. Conversely, the PDS negatively ranks foods high in saturated fat and cholesterol. In this episode, Dr. Andrea Glenn, the lead author of this study, discusses the intricacies of the research, providing insights into its findings and shedding light on how these findings resonate within the broader landscape of literature.
1/2/202442 minutes, 2 seconds
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Listener Q&A: Homocysteine, MUFA, Healhty BMI, and more! (Preview)

This episode is one of our Premium-exclusive AMA (ask me anything) episodes, where we answer questions submitted by Premium subscribers. To listen to the full 90 minute episode, you’ll need to be a Premium subscriber and access the episode on the private Premium feed. Otherwise, you can hear a preview of the episode here. Full List of Questions: [01:50] How should one interpret the systematic reviews done by Hooper et al that report no association between modification or reduction of saturated fat intake with cardiovascular mortality, total mortality, non-fatal MI? [22.10] Given most people don’t meet them, are public health targets for fruit and vegetables too high? [29.10] What is the role of homocysteine in heart disese? Is it causal? [40:45] Monounsaturated Fat: Good, Bad or Indifferent? [50:13] Is there evidence to suggest an upper limit for BMI, where even individuals with a ‘healthy’ body composition would be at elevated risk? [59:32] Where does the current research stand on the impact of diet on brain health? [01:08:48] Based on recent findings, do we have to throw out previous research on diet’s impact on the gut microbiome?
12/26/202319 minutes, 55 seconds
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#506 Sports Nutrition: Translating Research to Practice – Andreas Kasper, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with links to studies) Subscribe to PREMIUM Join Sigma's email newsletter Sigma's Recommended Resources About This Episode: Navigating the intricate landscape of sports nutrition is one that constantly evolves and challenges our understanding of optimal athletic performance. The delicate balance between advancing research and ensuring practical applicability in the high-speed realm of sports nutrition is a perpetual struggle. Decision-making is difficult, especially when faced with a scarcity of evidence. It’s a challenge that resonates with many professionals in the field, prompting reflections on the art of making informed choices in the absence of conclusive data. In this episode, Dr. Andy Kasper, PhD shares his experiences and research in the field of elite sports nutrition. Dr. Kasper, a PhD in Nutrition and Physiology from Liverpool John Moores University, currently spearheads the Performance Nutrition department at Newcastle United Football Club. His illustrious career spans across elite football, rugby union, and rugby league, with notable stints at clubs like Chelsea, Fulham, Derby, England Rugby Union, Sale Sharks, London Irish, and Wasps, to name a few. A prolific contributor to academic publications, Dr. Kasper’s insights have not only shaped the scientific landscape but have also directly influenced the nutritional strategies employed by top-tier athletes. Our conversation will traverse a myriad of topics, from the transformative changes witnessed in sports nutrition to invaluable advice for practitioners navigating this intricate terrain. We’ll also delve into the delicate balance between advancing research and ensuring practical applicability in the fast-paced world of sports nutrition. Dr. Kasper will shed light on the Paper-to-Podium Matrix, a concept that bridges the gap between scientific discoveries and their real-world implementation in the pursuit of athletic excellence.
12/19/202349 minutes, 37 seconds
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#505: Oslo Diet-Heart Study: Cholesterol-lowering Diets & Cardiovascular Events

Links: Go to episode page (with study links) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive our email newsletter About This Episode: The Oslo Diet-Heart Study was one of the earliest randomized controlled trials to explore the relationship between diet and heart disease. It aimed to investigate the impact of dietary interventions, specifically the reduction of saturated fat intake and an increase in polyunsaturated fat intake, on cardiovascular health. The Oslo Diet-Heart Study involved 412 men who had already suffered a myocardial infarction 1-2 years before the start of the intervention. Despite some known limitations, the Oslo Diet-Heart Study played a role in shaping early understanding on the relationship between dietary fat, cholesterol levels, and heart disease. Subsequent research and larger studies have contributed to a more nuanced understanding of the complex factors influencing cardiovascular health. In this episode we discuss why this trial is important in the history of diet-heart research and how it connects to other seminal work in the field.
12/12/202340 minutes, 24 seconds
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#504: Vegetable Oil vs. Saturated Fat – Analysis of the LA Veterans Study

Links: Go to episode page (with study links) Receive Sigma's email newsletter Subscribe to PREMIUM - get study notes to this episode About This Episode: In 1959 a landmark clinical trial, often referred to as the LA Veterans Study, began with the aim to investigate the effects of replacing dietary saturated fats with polyunsaturated fats, on the progression of atherosclerosis and cardiovascular outcomes. This was an eight-year clinical trial in 846 domiciled male veterans in the US. The diets between the control and experimental groups differed by saturated fat and polyunsaturated fat (particularly linoleic acid) content, but were similar in calories and total dietary fat. The findings of the study suggested that replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat was beneficial for reducing heart disease risk. However, the study also reported an unexpected increase in non-cardiac mortality in the intervention group, which raised concerns. In this episode, we discuss why the LA Veterans Study was such a seminal trial and what we can learn from it.
12/5/202342 minutes, 57 seconds
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#503: Lyon Diet Heart Study – Canola Oil, “Mediterranean” Diets & Minimizing Bias

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to Premium Learn more about Sigma Nutrition About This Episode: The Lyon Diet Heart Study (LDHS) is often cited as one of the pivotal studies that helped establish the Mediterranean diet as a recognized and recommended dietary pattern for cardiovascular health. A clinical trial conducted in Lyon, France, the LDHS showed significant reduction in cardiac death could be achieved in secondary prevention patients using a dietary intervention. Conducted between 1992 to 1996, the study involved 605 participants who had previously experienced a heart attack (myocardial infarction). LDHS showed an incredible 75% lower risk of cardiac death in these patients. This remarkable reduction was unexpected and led to considerable attention from the medical and scientific communities. LDHS is interesting to dig into for several reasons. First, it’s clever methodology was able to account for some challenges of doing nutrition research. Second, the dietary intervention, whilst named as a “Mediterranean diet”, should perhaps be considered differently. In this episode, Alan and Danny dig into all the details, highlighting some important lessons we can take from LDHS.
11/28/202343 minutes, 4 seconds
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#502: Sydney Diet-Heart Study – Is Linoleic Acid Causing Heart Disease?

Links: Go to episode page (with study links) Subscribe to Premium Past episodes referenced: Episodes 493, 481 & 317 Further reading: How Diet Influences Heart Disease Risk About This Episode: The Sydney Diet-Heart Study was a clinical trial conducted in the 1960s and 1970s that aimed to examine the hypothesis that reducing saturated fat intake in the diet would lead to a reduced risk of heart disease. However, it really only gained attention after a more recent re-analysis by Ramsden et al., which in recent years has been used as supporting evidence for the idea that increased polyunsaturated fat (PUFA), and specifically linoleic acid, in addition to reduced saturated fat intake, can increase heart disease risk. This was based on the findings that substituting linoleic acid in place of saturated fat increased all-cause, CVD and CHD mortality. This is of course counter to prevailing consensus and guidelines in this area, which routinely show reduced risk on replacing SFA with PUFA. Could this trial undermine the common conclusions that replacing saturated fat with polyunsaturated fat decreases heart disease risk? In this episode Alan and Danny discuss some of the crucial aspects to understand about this study and what it means for what conclusions can be made about the impact of PUFA broadly, and linoleic acid specifically, on our health.
11/21/202340 minutes, 52 seconds
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Addressing Some Criticisms of Nutritional Epidemiology (SNP 23)

Note: This is a Premium-exclusive episode, so in order to listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.  About This Episode Nutritional epidemiology has faced strong criticism over time. While some of the methodological limitations are fair, often there are criticisms that are misguided and inaccurate. In this episode, Danny touches on a few examples of the misunderstandings of the field and how such claims can be addressed in a more accurate manner. Links: Subscribe to Premium Go to episode page See recommended resources Receive weekly emails from Sigma
11/14/202310 minutes, 38 seconds
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#501: Sex-based Training Recommendations: Evidence-based or Hype? – David Nolan, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with study links) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive emails from Sigma Nutrition Sigma's Recommended Resources About This Episode: The field of research exploring sex differences in exercise response has yielded intriguing findings, shedding light on the complex interplay between biology, physiology, and training adaptations. One of the fundamental areas of investigation pertains to sex disparities in strength, power, and hypertrophy. Historically, it’s been well-established that males, on average, exhibit greater absolute strength and muscle mass compared to females. This discrepancy often traces its roots back to inherent physiological distinctions. However, when it comes to responses to strength and hypertrophy training, the narrative becomes more nuanced. Research indicates that, when individuals of both sexes follow matched resistance training protocols, the relative improvements in strength and hypertrophy are quite similar. So, do women need to be trained differently than men? The answer, it appears, is not as much as one might assume. The principles of progressive overload, specificity, and other training fundamentals remain constant. While individualization is key, the idea of drastically distinct training guidelines based on sex lacks compelling empirical support. The guest in this episode, Dr. David Nolan, is a researcher in the area of sex differences in exercise response, and has looked at the influences of menstrual cycle and hormonal contraceptive use in female athletes on their performance. In this episode, we discuss the research to date, and what this means practically for athletes and coaches.
11/7/20231 hour, 13 minutes, 29 seconds
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#500 – The Big Unanswered Questions in Nutrition Science

Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM to get study notes to this episode Go to episode page to see background detail & links See our recommended resources for further learning Previous episodes referenced: SNP17: Is Personalized Nutrition Superior to General Nutrition Advice? 414: Will Machine Learning Overtake Traditional Nutrition Research Methods? 469: Chrononutrition – New Findings & Updated Views About This Episode: To mark the 500th episode of the podcast, Danny and Alan take a look at some of the current outstanding questions in nutrition science, what areas have largely been resolved, and how their own thinking has evolved and changed over time. This brings them into areas such as personalized nutrition, ultra-processed foods, time-restricted eating, salt & health, and the difference between being “evidence-based” and “reference-based”. We Discuss: Outstanding questions in nutrition science Personalized nutrition Ultra-prosessed foods (UPFs) Diet-Microbiome-Health Omega-3 Fatty Acids Largely resolved questions Sodium & CVD risk TRE/TRF Macronutrient breakdown & weight loss Evolution in our thinking Epistemology at the forefront “Reference-based” to evidence-based Reading research: understanding “highest quality evidence”
10/31/20231 hour, 19 minutes, 26 seconds
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#499: How Sensory Cues Impact Food Choice & Behavior – Prof. Ciarán Forde

Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM Go to episode page (with further reading links) Receive our weekly emails About This Episode: Sensory cues, comprising taste, smell, texture, and appearance, serve as the initial drivers that influence our food preferences and liking for particular items. These sensory cues can be both inherent, such as the natural sweetness of fruit, and learned, as in the association between a particular aroma and a favorite dish. One crucial aspect of this research is delving into how sensory properties of food, like texture and taste, contribute to our choices and consumption patterns. Food texture, for example, plays a key role in determining how quickly we consume a meal, with softer textures often being associated with faster eating rates. Sensory intensity and palatability are also central themes in this research. Moreover, research into dietary fat reveals intriguing phenomena like “fat blindness,” where the ability to discriminate different levels of fat diminishes as taste intensity increases. Understanding these relationships can help shed light on factors contributing to overeating and potential avenues for behavior modification. To give us a better insight into this field of research, Professor in Sensory Science and Eating Behavior at Wageningen University, Prof. Ciarán Forde, is on the podcast to discuss these ideas.
10/24/20231 hour, 2 minutes, 5 seconds
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The PREDIMED Trial – Controversy, Criticisms, & Lessons Learned (SNP 22)

Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM Go to episode page Learn more about the podcast Sigma's recommended resources About This Episode: PREDIMED (Prevención con Dieta Mediterránea) is a landmark clinical trial conducted in Spain. The study made a huge splash due to the rarity in nutrition of having large RCTs with hard endpoints. In addition, it had results of a large magnitude; showing a 30% reduction in cardiovascular events. But the study did face criticisms and controversies over methodological issues, including randomization procedures at certain centers, ultimately leading to a retraction of the original paper and a re-analysis. Participants in the PREDIMED trial were randomly assigned to one of three groups: A Mediterranean diet supplemented with extra-virgin olive oil. A Mediterranean diet supplemented with mixed nuts (walnuts, almonds, and hazelnuts). A control group following a low-fat diet. Despite the issues it still ends up being an incredibly useful source of data. In this episode we discuss the findings from PREDIMED, some of the potential limitations, and where it sits among the wider Mediterranean Diet literature. Note: This is a Premium-exclusive episode, so in order to listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.
10/17/202317 minutes, 36 seconds
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#498: The PROPEL Trial & Weight Loss Interventions in Primary Care – John Apolzan, PhD

Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM Go to episode page (with linked studies) Receive the weekly Sigma email newsletter Recommended resources About this Episode: The PROPEL (Promoting Successful Weight Loss in Primary Care in Louisiana) trial was a cluster-randomized weight loss trial, specifically tailored to address the pressing health concerns of an underserved population in Louisiana, where obesity rates have reached alarming levels. The core of the intervention comprises a pragmatic, high-intensity lifestyle-based obesity treatment program, thoughtfully designed to be integrated within primary care settings. Over a 24-month duration, this multi-component weight loss program is delivered by skilled health coaches who are embedded in primary care clinics, with the aim of instigating substantial and sustainable weight loss outcomes. In this study, 803 participants were enrolled, of whom 67% identified as Black and 84% as female, thereby ensuring a diverse representation. The research design randomized 18 clinics, allocating them equally into two groups: usual care and an Intensive Lifestyle Intervention (ILI). The usual care group continued to receive their customary primary care, serving as the benchmark against which the ILI’s efficacy will be measured. In this episode we have the opportunity to delve deeper into the intricacies of the PROPEL trial and gain insights from one of its lead researchers, Dr. John Apolzan of the Pennington Biomedical Research Center.  
10/10/202335 minutes, 39 seconds
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#497: Are Food Frequency Questionnaires Reliable?

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to PREMIUM Recommended resources Receive Sigma's free email newsletter Learn more about the podcast About This Episode: Food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) have been widely employed in nutrition research to assess dietary intake patterns among study participants. However, debates surrounding the reliability of FFQs have persisted both inside and outside the academic community. These debates primarily revolve around issues related to measurement error, recall bias, and the appropriateness of FFQs for diverse populations. One prominent concern is the potential for measurement error in FFQs. These questionnaires rely on self-reported data from participants, which can introduce inaccuracies due to memory limitations and social desirability bias. Participants may not accurately recall their food consumption frequencies and portion sizes, leading to imprecise estimates of nutrient intake. Recall bias is another critical issue in the reliability debate. Participants may selectively remember or misreport the consumption of certain foods or nutrients, leading to an overestimation or underestimation of actual dietary intake. Two concepts are crucial to understand: validity and reproducibility. FFQs are validated by cross-referencing the FFQ data with other dietary assessment tools (or other methods). It’s also important to consider if an FFQ gives reproducible results when used on multiple occasions. When we ask “are FFQs reliable?”, we must first understand the conceptual exposure of interest: average intake over time. Second, we must consider what nutrients we are looking at. And third, in what population. In this episode, Danny & Alan discuss the reliability of FFQs and how to have a deeper, more accurate understanding of their use. They take a look at valid critcisms of FFQs, as well as some of the more ill-informed criticisms.
10/3/20231 hour, 8 minutes, 14 seconds
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SNP21: Sick Individuals and Sick Populations

Links: Subscribe to Premium Sigma recommended resources Learn more about the podcast About this episode: In 1985 a paper titled “Sick Individuals and Sick Populations” was published in the International Journal of Epidemiology. The paper, authored by eminent epidemiologist Geoffrey Rose, can be considered as seminal and important because it brilliantly raised the concept of the “prevention paradox” and challenged traditional approaches to public health and preventive medicine. The paper’s insights have had a lasting impact on how we understand and approach population health interventions. And it raised many contentious public health issues, which are still debated and relevant today. The ideas have very important implications for how we can tackle diet-related diseases in meaningful ways. In this episode, Danny and Alan discuss the central themes of the paper, why they are so crucial to understand, and what this means for our understanding of diet and chronic disease prevention.
9/26/202317 minutes, 48 seconds
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#496: ATBC Cancer Prevention Study – Crucial Lessons

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to PREMIUM Get our free weekly emails Learn more about Sigma Nutrition Radio About This Episode: The Alpha-Tocopherol, Beta-Carotene Cancer Prevention Study (ATBC) stands as a seminal and pioneering research endeavor within the domain of epidemiology and cancer prevention. Conducted in Finland, the study aimed to examine the potential protective effects of alpha-tocopherol (vitamin E) and beta-carotene supplementation against the occurrence of various cancer types, particularly lung cancer, among male smokers. Initiated in the early 1980s, the study’s comprehensive design, rigorous methodology, and its focus on a specific high-risk population have contributed significantly to the understanding of the interplay between dietary antioxidants and cancer risk. The ATBC study was founded on a growing body of evidence suggesting the potential role of antioxidants in mitigating the deleterious effects of oxidative stress and free radical damage, which are recognized as contributors to carcinogenesis. The selection of male smokers as the study cohort was strategically significant, given the heightened susceptibility of this group to lung cancer and other malignancies due to the synergistic action of smoking and oxidative stress. The study’s rigorous double-blind, placebo-controlled design ensured a high degree of scientific rigor, minimizing biases and confounding factors that might influence the outcomes. One of the primary reasons for the study’s seminal status is its contribution to the understanding of the complex relationship between antioxidants and cancer risk. While the study did not find a significant reduction in lung cancer incidence among the intervention group receiving alpha-tocopherol and beta-carotene supplements, its findings spurred critical discussions within the scientific community. The neutral or inconclusive results underscored the intricate nature of carcinogenesis and highlighted the limitations of simplistic cause-and-effect interpretations in the context of cancer prevention. Moreover, the ATBC study contributed to a shift in research paradigms, prompting scientists to explore broader dietary and lifestyle factors that influence cancer risk beyond single-nutrient interventions. In this episode we discuss the three most important publications from the study, with a specific look at what crucial lessons they teach us about the nuances, challenges, and unique aspects of nutrition as a scientific field.
9/19/20231 hour, 1 minute, 14 seconds
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#495: Circadian Clocks in Muscle & Exercise as a Time Cue – Prof. Karyn Esser

Links:  Episode page with extra resources Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive our free weekly emails Learn more about Sigma Nutrition Radio About this Episode: The field of circadian biology has long been associated with regulating diurnal physiological processes, notably the sleep-wake cycle. However, recent advances have unveiled a broader role for circadian clocks across various tissues, including skeletal muscle. Within this context, the investigation of circadian clocks within the skeletal muscle milieu has emerged as a frontier of scientific inquiry. These intrinsic timekeeping mechanisms exhibit multifaceted regulatory capacities beyond mere temporal synchronization. This episode delves into the implications of “circadian clocks” operating within skeletal muscle tissue, with the esteemed Prof. Karyn Esser as this week’s guest. Her pioneering work has been instrumental in understanding the interplay between circadian rhythmicity and muscular physiology.
9/12/202335 minutes, 27 seconds
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#494: Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial

Links: Go to episode page (with study links & resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive our weekly newsletter More episodes on cholesterol & heart disease About This Episode: The Multiple Risk Factor Intervention Trial (MRFIT) was a groundbreaking clinical trial conducted in the 1970s and 1980s. Its main objective was to investigate the relationship between various risk factors and the incidence of heart disease. The study aimed to determine whether modifying risk factors, such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol levels, and smoking, could lead to a reduction in cardiovascular events. The trial spanned several years, with participants being followed up for a period of approximately six years to assess the incidence of cardiovascular events and mortality. The primary outcome measures included coronary heart disease (CHD) mortality and overall mortality. The MRFIT trial yielded several important findings that have significantly influenced our understanding of cardiovascular health and prevention strategies. In this episode we take a look at why this is such seminal research, as well as the contribution of one of the greatest researchers ever in the field, Jeramiah Stamler.
9/5/202354 minutes, 33 seconds
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#493: The Keys Equation – How Dietary Fats Impact Blood Cholesterol

Links: Go to episode page (with resources for this episode) Subscribe to PREMIUM Join the Sigma email newsletter Learn more about Sigma Nutrition Radio About this Episode: One of the most important and influential papers in nutrition science is one by Ancel Keys and his colleagues that was published in The Lancet in 1957. This seminal paper examined the relationship between dietary fat intake and serum cholesterol levels. The researchers investigated how different types of fats in the diet affected cholesterol levels in a series of their previous tightly-controlled dietary experiments.. Those studies involved feeding the participants various diets with different compositions of fats. The researchers analyzed the participants’ blood samples to measure changes in serum cholesterol levels in response to dietary changes. The most important aspect of this paper is the presentation of the ‘Keys Equation’; a predictive equation for the impacts of saturated, monounsaturated, and polyunsaturated fats, and dietary cholesterol, on blood cholesterol levels. Crucially, the Keys Equation identifies the importance of the ratio of polyunsaturated to saturated fats in the diet; known as the ‘P:S ratio’. It showed that the P:S ratio is the most important dietary factor impacting blood cholesterol levels. And specifically that saturated fats increase total and LDL cholesterol twice as much as polyunsaturated fats lower them. The findings of this study were significant in highlighting the potential impact of dietary fat subtypes on serum cholesterol levels and heart disease risk. It contributed to the growing body of evidence supporting the hypothesis that high serum cholesterol levels, particularly due to a diet rich in saturated fats, were associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular diseases. In this episode, as part of our new series taking an in-depth look at seminal nutrition studies, we go through this influential paper from Keys, Anderson and Grande.
8/29/202358 minutes, 50 seconds
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Announcement: I Wrote a Book!

The book: makingweightbook.com What if you could guarantee your diet and weight-cutting plan would maximize performance? Take control and transform your performance with… Making Weight: The Ultimate Science-based Guide to Cutting Weight for Combat Sports. Whether you’re a nutrition professional or combat sports athlete looking to optimize the weight cutting process, then this is the book for you. Written by renowned combat sports dietitian Jordan Sullivan, and nutrition science expert Danny Lennon, Making Weight is the definitive guide to cutting weight for combat sports. The authors draw on years of experience working with combat athletes, as well as the latest research in sports nutrition and physiology, to bring you a step-by-step plan for optimizing your weight-cutting process. From determining your ideal weight class to implementing the most effective strategies for cutting weight, Making Weight covers everything you need to succeed in combat sports. There are also real-world case studies of the diets and strategies of some of the best athletes in the world. You’ll see clear examples for a range of competition types; from pro MMA fights to amateur bouts with same-day weigh-ins to BJJ tournaments. Making Weight is the ultimate resource for nutritionists, coaches and athletes involved in combat sports, who want to master their nutrition, optimize their weight cutting process and perform at their best. With this book, you’ll have the knowledge and tools to cut weight safely and effectively, without sacrificing health or performance. "Jordi is a master of his craft! I trust his numbers and stats on me that he's gathered over the years. And I'm just happy to be where I'm at. I feel good. I feel really good." - Israel Adesanya, UFC Middleweight Champion Get your copy now at makingweightbook.com
8/24/20233 minutes, 41 seconds
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SNP20: The Cumulative Exposure Model of LDL-C & Heart Disease

This is a Premium-exclusive episode, so here you'll only hear a preview. In order to listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. About This Episode: It has been clearly demonstrated that elevated LDL-cholesterol (LDL-C), or perhaps more specifically pro-atherogenic lipoproteins, is causal in atherosclerosis development in humans. One crucial concept within this is that the risk relates not only to the magnitude of elevated LDL-C, but the duration of exposure. Thus, the role of LDL-C in driving atherosclerosis is referred to as a “cumulative, integrated exposure over the lifecourse”. But, what exactly does this mean? In this episode, Danny discusses the cumulative exposure model of LDL-C in atherosclerosis, the evidence supporting it, and the implications of this for the “debates” that get raised in relation to LDL-C (or apoB-containing lipoproteins) and heart disease. Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM See more episodes on heart disease and lipids Receive the free Sigma email newsletter
8/22/202313 minutes, 24 seconds
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#492: How Does Weight Cycling Impact Long-term Health?

Links: Resources and info for this episode Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's weekly email newsletter About This Episode: Losing at least 5% of one’s initial body weight is associated with improvements in glycaemic control, blood pressure, triglyceride levels, and other positive outcomes. Due to these reasons, it is typically recommended that individuals classified as overweight or obese should engage in effective weight loss interventions. However, despite the potential for clinically significant weight loss through these interventions, weight regain is a common occurrence. This can be attributed to a combination of low adherence to weight control strategies and compensatory physiological mechanisms that influence weight regain. Consequently, this may result in a cycle of losing and regaining weight over the long term, which is commonly referred to as “weight cycling.” There are concerns regarding the potential harm to health and increased risk of chronic diseases associated with weight cycling. Some mechanisms have been proposed, such as the loss of lean mass during weight loss periods that is not regained when weight is regained. However, the evidence supporting the harmful effects of weight cycling on health is incomplete and many unanswered questions remain. In this episode, we will examine the evidence published to date and draw evidence-based conclusions regarding the impact of weight cycling on long-term health.
8/15/20231 hour, 6 minutes, 19 seconds
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#491: Do High Protein Intakes Cause Insulin Resistance?

Links: Episode Resources Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive our weekly newsletter About This Episode: There has been interest in, and debate about, how protein intake impacts metabolic health, particularly in relation to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes risk. Recently, there has been interest in higher protein intakes as an intervention in diabetes, owing to a variety of potential mechanisms. For example, the satiety value of protein, the promotion of insulin secretion by protein, and imapcts on incretin hormones. However, others have warned against high protein intakes. With some going as far as to claim high, or even moderate, protein intakes can lead to insulin resistance or negatively effect beta-cell function. In this episode, we look at the research typically cited in support of such claims, and dig into the details. We consider the overall evidence in this area to answer the question ‘do high protein diets cause insulin resistance or increase diabetes risk?’.
8/8/20231 hour, 2 minutes, 53 seconds
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#490: How Does Exercise Impact Beta-cell Function in Type 2 Diabetes? – Mark Lyngbæk, MD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive our free weekly emails About This Episode: The management of type 2 diabetes has long been a challenge, but a new study conducted by researcher Mark Lyngbaek and his colleagues has the potential to add important considerations to the approach to treatment. Titled the “DOSE-EX” randomized clinical trial, their study uncovers the impact of exercise and weight loss on beta-cell function, a key factor in diabetes progression. DOSE-EX is a four-armed randomized trial involving 82 individuals with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes. The participants were divided into four groups: standard care, calorie restriction, calorie restriction with exercise three times per week, and calorie restriction with exercise six times per week. Over a span of 16 weeks, the researchers assessed the effects of these interventions on beta-cell function using various indicators. The study’s findings are incredibly interesting, demonstrating that exercise in combination with diet-induced weight loss leads to a substantial improvement in glucose-stimulated beta-cell function. Importantly, the results indicate the importance of considering both: a) the exercise dose, and b) the methodology of assessing beta-cell function, when evaluating intervention effectiveness. In this episode, Dr. Lyngbaek will elucidate the implications of these findings for the management of type 2 diabetes. We will explore the potential of exercise as a therapeutic tool, its optimal dosage, and the considerations for integrating it into individualized treatment plans. About The Guest: Dr. Mark Lyngbæk is a physician, currently in an introduction position at the Department of Rheumatology and Internal Medicine 2 at Holbæk Hospital, and also a PhD student at the Centre for Physical Activity Research at Rigshospitalet. His research has looked at exercise, beta-cell function and type 2 diabetes. He is supported by a research grant from the Danish Diabetes Academy, which is funded by the Novo Nordisk Foundation (grant number NNF17SA0031406). The Centre for Physical Activity Research is supported by TrygFonden (grants ID 101390, ID 20045, and ID 125132).   Subscribe to PREMIUM
8/1/202358 minutes
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What is a Causal Risk Factor? (AMA with Alan)

Links: Subscribe to PREMIUM Episode page Receive Sigma emails About this Episode: We've just released a lengthy 'ask me anything' episode, where Dr. Alan Flanagan addressed specific listener questions, over on the Sigma Nutition Premium feed. In this episode, you'll hear one detailed answer from that AMA, in which Alan discusses the concept of "causal risk factors". This is a term that is regularly mentioned on the podcast, and has a very specific and important meaning. This episode will give you an in-depth understanding and comfort with the term, which will enhance your future understanding and learning. If you wish to hear the other 10 questions Alan answered, you can subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium here.
7/25/202331 minutes, 39 seconds
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#489: Inequalities in Diabetes Outcomes for African & Caribbean Communities – Prof. Louise Goff

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Receive Danny's weekly emails Twitter: @NutritionDanny Subscribe to PREMIUM About This Episode: In the UK, there is a threefold higher incidence of type 2 diabetes in UK African and Caribbean (AfC) communities, compared to the general population. And ethnic inequalities in type 2 diabetes treatment and outcomes have been documented. And so addressing these inequalities is an urgent healthcare priority in the UK. Differences in outcomes relate to physiological differences as well as pragmatic issues and structural barriers. Professor Louise Goff has done pioneering work in relation to both aspects. Prof. Goff’s research has highlighted ethnic differences in type 2 diabetes pathophysiology between those in UK African and Caribbean groups and white Europeans. This means that typical screening for diabetes may not be as useful for AfC communities, in addition to treatments not being as appropriate. In addition, there are noted differences in engagement with diabetes education services and self-management advice. This may be due to the fact that the delivery of information is not culturally relevant to those in AfC communities. And so diabetes structured education programs have been found to be less successful in people from minority ethnic groups. Prof. Goff has attempted to address this by developing a culturally tailored self-management education and support program for type 2 diabetes in black-British adults. This program, called the Healthy Eating and Active Lifestyles for Diabetes (HEAL-D) program, has initially been trialed with local Black African and Caribbean communities and healthcare providers in South London. In this episode, Prof. Goff discusses the ethnic differences in diabetes pathophysiology and the other factors underlying the inequalities in diabetes outcomes in black African and Caribbean communities. Go to episode page (with resources)
7/18/202351 minutes, 16 seconds
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#488: Does Time of Day Impact Hunger, Appetite & Satiety?

Links: Episode page (with links to resources) Receive Danny's weekly emails Subscribe to PREMIUM About This Episode: The topic of whether hunger and satiety are affected by the time of day has generated considerable interest within the nutrition research community. Researchers have been particularly intrigued by the potential influence of circadian rhythms on caloric intake throughout the day. Initially, a number of studies proposed that consuming high energy intakes in the morning could lead to significantly greater weight loss compared to evening consumption. And while much attention was placed on the hypothesis that differences in expenditure were the cause, more recent research has called that into doubt. And so, it is crucial to consider the possibility that other factors may be contributing to the outcomes observed in the intervention trials. In recent years, a series of papers has suggested an alternative explanation; the impact of time-of-day energy intake on appetite and hunger. In this episode, Alan and Danny take a look at the current evidence related to this connection between time-of-day, appetite, and energy intake. And then, from that, what does this mean for how calorie distribution may affect dietary intake, body composition and health.
7/11/20231 hour, 27 minutes, 47 seconds
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#487: Weight Cutting in Combat Sports – Jordan Sullivan

Links: Join notification list for book pre-orders Go to episode page (w/ resources) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium About This Episode: “Weight cutting” is a common practice in weight-class based sports. And typically, combat sport athletes have reported cutting the largest amounts of weight for competition. The concept of cutting weight is based on the assumption that a size advantage gives a performance advantage in combat sports. And by getting into a lower weight class than their “normal” weight, athletes can enjoy an advantage (or, more accurately, not be at a disadvantage). The decrease in weight from an athlete’s habitual weight to their weight-class limit typically has two phases: a chronic weight loss phase (gradual dieting to lose fat mass), and an acute weight loss phase (rapid declines in weight due to losses of water, glycogen and gut residue). To discuss the science, practical application and dangers of weight cutting strategies, performance dietitian Jordan Sullivan is on the podcast. Jordan has been the performance dietitian for several years to Israel Adesanya, Alexander Volkanovski, Leon Edwards, Dan Hooker, Kai Kara-France, and many other well-known names. And he is the co-author, along with Danny, of the new textbook ‘Making Weight: The Ultimate Science Based Guide to Cutting Weight for Combat Sports’.
7/5/20231 hour, 15 minutes
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#486: Blood Glucose Spikes: How High is Too High? – Mario Kratz, PhD & Nicola Guess, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Receive Danny's weekly emails Subscribe to PREMIUM Twitter: @NutritionDanny Instagram: @dannylennon_sigma About This Episode: Peaks in blood glucose (or “blood sugar spikes”) are commonly highlighted as something harmful to health. And, of course, an excessively high blood glucose response to a meal can be problematic, or at least indicate there is a problem. However, elevations in blood glucose after eating are a normal physiological response. And “bad” blood glucose responses are those that stay high for a prolonged period; i.e. after elevating, they don’t return to normal within an appropriate period of time. But now many normoglycemic people are worrying about normal blood glucose responses, due to information that portrays even moderate elevations in blood glucose as harfmul. To add to the confusion, people are looking at standardized cut-off thresholds for diabetes and pre-diabetes, and mistakenly using them to label their own response to eating as measured by a continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) device. When it comes to normoglycemic people, there is still a grey area in relation to how much of a glucose spike is a cause for concern. And given that there are still open questions that evidence has not fully answered yet, there is room for different interpretations of how to answer this question. So what actually is a blood glucose peak that is “too high”? Is it 7.8 mmol/L (140 mg/dL)? 10.0 mmol/L (180 mg/dL)? 11.1 mmol/L (200 mg/dL)? Or do we even need to think about this once standard measures (e.g. HbA1C) are normal? To discuss this interesting area, Dr. Mario Kratz and Dr. Nicola Guess are on the podcast to offer some perspectives and their conclusions from the current evidence base. Blood Glucose Unit Conversions: 1.7 mmol/L = 30 mg/dL 7.0 mmol/L = 126 mg/dL 7.8 mmol/L = 140 mg/dL 9.0 mmol/L = 162 mg/dL 10.0 mmol/L = 180 mg/dL 11.0 mmol/L = 198 mg/dL 11.1 mmol/L = 200 mg/dL
6/27/20231 hour, 21 minutes, 5 seconds
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#485: Does Menopause Alter Appetite?

Links: Go to episode page Receive Danny's weekly emails Subscribe to PREMIUM About This Episode: Menopause is commonly associated with hormonal changes and physical symptoms, such as hot flashes, mood changes, sleep issues, and weight gain. Based on anecdotal reports, another interesting question emerges: what is the potential impact of menopause on appetite? As women undergo this transformative phase, many report fluctuations in their food intake and body weight, raising the question: Does menopause alter appetite? Understanding the relationship between menopause and appetite is of great significance, as it can potentially provide insights into the mechanisms behind weight gain and obesity risk that often accompany this stage of life. Furthermore, comprehending the factors that contribute to changes in appetite during menopause could aid in the development of tailored interventions and strategies to support women’s overall health and well-being. In this episode, we delve into the research to see if we can unearth any answers. What studies have been done? What results do we see? What conclusions does this allow us to make? And what does future research need to do in order to provide better answers?
6/20/202345 minutes, 14 seconds
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SNP18: What is a Healthy Low-Carb Diet?

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's weekly email Twitter: @NutritionDanny Instagram: @dannylennon_sigma About This Episode: Note: This is a Premium-exclusive episode, so in order to listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.  Low-carbohydrate diets come with a list of reported benefits, and research does show benefit for a number of different outcomes. However, many influencers and advocates of low-carb diets routinely add commentary that is misleading, incorrect, and possibly dangerous. This has led to us highlighting such incorrect information on this podcast before and pushing back against central claims of the “big names” in the “low-carb community”. However, low-carbohydrate diets can indeed be a viable dietary pattern for people who wish to consume a healthy diet… provided they meet a few criteria. In other words, it is possible to consume a low-carb diet that still largely fits in with the evidence we have on healthy dietary patterns. In this episode, Danny discusses what health outcomes may result from low-carb diets, and what distinguishes a “healthy low-carb diet” from an “unhealthy low-carb diet”. This includes some pragmatic tips for nutritionists, health professionals and consumers, who are choosing to use a low-carbohydrate diet.
6/13/202313 minutes, 38 seconds
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#484: Is Metabolic Adaptation an Illusion? – Eric Trexler, PhD

Links: Episode page with resources Subscribe to PREMIUM MASS Research Review About This Episode: Metabolic adaptation refers to the process by which the body adjusts its metabolism in response to changes in energy intake or body mass. This adjustment can occur in both directions, meaning that the body can increase or decrease its energy expenditure in response to changes in energy intake or body weight. When someone consumes fewer calories than their body requires for energy, the body will respond by slowing down its metabolism to conserve energy. This can make it harder to lose weight and maintain weight loss over time. Conversely, when someone consumes more calories than their body needs, the body will increase its metabolic rate in order to burn off the excess energy. There are several open debates in science about metabolic adaptation, including the actual magnitude of it, its relevance to weight loss, what measurement methods should be used, and the mechanisms underlying the contributory factors. Some people have framed metabolic adaptation as so significant that it makes weight loss attempts futile. While others, including in research, have referred to metabolic adaptation as an “illusion”. So what do we actually know about this concept and what is the pragmatic significance of it? To discuss the nuances of the topic, Alan and Danny are joined by Dr. Eric Trexler, who has published on this topic and has followed recent publications closely. About The Guest: Dr. Eric Trexler is Director of Education at Stronger By Science, where he co-hosts the SBS podcast. He also is one of the four contributors to the MASS Research Review. Eric has a prolific background in exercise science research, with more than 30 publications to his name by the time he completed his PhD at UNC-Chapel Hill. --- Subscribe to PREMIUM
6/6/20231 hour, 15 minutes, 37 seconds
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#483: What are the Effects of Very High Fiber Intakes?

Links: Episode page (with links to studies mentioned) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's free weekly email About This Episode: The benefits of consuming a higher fiber diet have been consistently demonstrated in nutrition research. Epidemiology clearly shows that higher intakes, compared to lower intakes, leads to a risk reduction for a range of diseases, including cardiovascular disease and colon cancer. And based on this epidemiological evidence, most dietary guidelines recommend dietary patterns that provide adults with 30-35g of dietary fiber per day. However, what do we know about intakes beyond this? Do we continue to see benefit in a linear fashion? Is there a ceiling to benefit? At what level would we see “optimal” benefit or the greatest magnitude of risk reduction? The ability to answer such questions is hampered by the fact it’s difficult to find cohort studies where the “high” fiber level is high enough to relate to this issue. However, there have been some controlled studies looking specifically at “very high” intakes, i.e. those far above current recommendations. In addition, there are some populations where habitual dietary intake gives a fiber intake far above the typcial intakes in Western cohorts. So in this episode we go through this data to try to see what we can conclude about this fascinating question of ‘what are the health effects at very high fiber intakes?’ New to Sigma Nutrition? Learn more about us here.
5/30/20231 hour, 18 minutes
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#482: Carbohydrate Quality & Health – Andrew Reynolds, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's weekly email About This Episode: In the last couple of decades, carbohydrates have experienced an increasing amount of negative campaigning. In general, the main argument is that carbohydrates have been viewed as the root cause for obesity, diabetes and several other diseases including heart disease and behavioral disorders. However, there can often be a lack of appreciation that not all carbohydrates are equal in their health effects. Beyond this, now there has even been confusion as to whether high fiber diets with whole grains are good for you or bad. This is mostly a result of strong claims made by people with large online followings and promoting specific diets. What does the best evidence tell us about different carbohydrate types and impacts on health outcomes? Should carbohydrates be viewed as inherently harmful? How solid is the evidence on whole grains, legumes and other high-fiber carbohydrate-rich foods? To help us tease through the science in this area, in this episode we get some answers from nutrition epidemiologist, Dr. Andrew Reynolds. About the Guest: Dr. Andrew Reynolds is a nutrition epidemiologist working with achievable lifestyle and environment change in the prevention and management of non-communicable diseases, such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. He primarily conducts randomised controlled trials and meta-analyses. Much of his work is to inform evidence-based dietary or clinical guidelines, policy, and food reformulation. Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's weekly email
5/23/20231 hour, 6 minutes, 49 seconds
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Is Personalized Nutrition Superior to General Nutrition Advice? (SNP 17)

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's free weekly email About This Episode: “Personalized nutrition” has been promoted as an approach that will improve people’s health by prescribing them specific dietary recommendations based on their own genetic and phenotypic data. The premise is that given we each respond differently to foods, having general dietary recommendations may be doing many people a disservice. And by using an array of personal data, it is now possible to give unique diets that improve health. The early and interesting findings of research in this area was met with much fanfare, and indeed, many companies are now offering commercial direct-to-consumer services based on genetic and physiological testing, followed by “personalized” dietary prescription. Such testing may include genetic tests, microbiome testing, glucose monitoring data, and more. This data is then fed into machine learning algorithms to prescribe dietary recommendations. However, do the marketing claims match the current evidence? Does the “proof” it works that is often cited, actually back up the claims? Do personalized nutrition diets actually lead to improved health outcomes over generic, conventional dietary recommendations? Do personalized nutrition diets lead to better outcomes than standard dietetic/nutrition practice? To answer these questions, we go through the main studies cited in favor of personalized nutrition being superior to typical dietary advice, and see if they indeed support the claims. So is personalized nutrition superior to standard dietary advice? Let’s find out… Note: This is a Premium-exclusive episode, so in order to listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. However, you can listen to a preview here.
5/16/202322 minutes, 57 seconds
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#481: Why Saturated Fat Really Does Impact Heart Disease Risk

Links: Go to episode page (with further resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Get Danny's weekly email, the Sigma Synopsis About This Episode: While it has long been acknowledged that high intakes of saturated fat can increase risk of atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease due to their impact on blood lipids, there are some who question the association between saturated fat and heart disease. Specifically, they may state that the evidence for this association is weak or non-existent, typically by pointing to some commonly cited studies that show null associations between saturated fat and CVD outcomes. On this basis, they may conclude that there is no basis to aim to limit saturated fat intake to current recommended levels or that reducing saturated fat intake will not actually improve health outcomes. In this episode, Alan and Danny look at the four most commonly cited publications showing a null association, highlighting some key issues. Beyond that, they look at a number of other lines of evidence on saturated fat that allows one to come to a confident answer on this question. So does reducing saturated fat intake to recommended levels actually reduce heart disease risk? Let’s discuss…
5/9/20231 hour, 30 minutes, 10 seconds
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#480: How Much Fiber Do We Need for Good Health? – Prof. Joanne Slavin

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition PREMIUM Receive Danny's free weekly emails About this Episode: The beneficial impact of a high-fiber diet is something that has been promoted in nutrition for a long period of time. But there remain a variety of interesting questions to researchers, practitioners and the general public alike. How much fiber do we actually need? What are current fiber recommendations based on? What outcomes have the strongest evidence for benefit? Should we have targets for fiber sub-types? Are some types of fiber “better” than others? Do functional fibers added to food products still retain the benefits we see with dietary fiber? To help get to some evidence-based answers on these issues, our guest in this episode is one of the researchers at the forefront of dietary fiber research for decades, Professor Joanne Slavin.
5/2/20231 hour, 10 minutes, 12 seconds
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#479: Blood Glucose, CGM Use, Diabetes Remission & High-Protein for Diabetes – Nicola Guess, PhD, RD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's free weekly email Description: Blood glucose responses play a crucial role in maintaining good health, and any abnormalities in glucose regulation can lead to several chronic conditions. Diabetes is one such disease that results from a lack of insulin production or the body’s inability to use insulin effectively, leading to elevated blood glucose levels. There has been debate about what exactly constitues a “healthy” and “unhealthy” blood glucose response. While it is suggested that unhealthy blood glucose responses are characterized by erratic and unpredictable “spikes” in blood glucose levels, sometimes vague terminology leads to people worrying about normal blood glucose responses. This may be particularly related to the increasing prevalence of continuous glucose monitoring (CGM) devices that allow individuals to track their glucose levels in real-time. While these devices can be helpful for people with diabetes to manage their glucose levels, they can also lead to unnecessary concern and anxiety about small, normal glucose elevations. In recent years exciting advances have been made in diabetes remission research. And off the back of that, more research has looked at various dietary interventions that could either directly impact remission, or act as an adjuct to other interventions. In this discussion with Dr. Nicola Guess, we discuss a range of topics related to glycemia, diabetes, and diet. This includes the potential for high-protein interventions, what utility CGMs actually have, what to make of diabetes remission trials, and future directions for the field.
4/25/202350 minutes, 41 seconds
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#478: Exposures in Nutrition – Why They’re Crucial to Understand

Links: Go to episode page (w/ resources) Get Danny's weekly emails Subscibe to Premium Description: Understanding the concept of an “exposure” is a critical aspect to nutrition science literacy. The ‘exposure of interest’ refers to the variable or factor that is being studied to determine its relationship with a particular health outcome. For example, in a study examining the relationship between diet and heart disease, the exposure of interest may be a particular nutrient or food group, such as saturated fat or red meat consumption. But when reading research we need to be able to critically examine the levels of an exposure and ask were these suitable for the research question at hand. For example, is there a sufficiently wide contrast in the exposure between the groups being compared? How do the reported levels of intake relate to what we know about this exposure from the wider literature? Much has been made of the many ’null’ associations found in nutrition epidemiology. But in many cases, these may be accounted for by looking at the exposure contrast or absolute intakes in those studies. Something we referred to as “null by design”. In this episode, Danny and Alan go through the most crucial aspects to understand about the exposure of interest in nutrition, hopefully leading to an enhanced understanding of interpreting nutrition research.  
4/18/20231 hour, 2 minutes, 23 seconds
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SNP16: A Dairy Fat Paradox? – Saturated Fat, Food Matrices & Heart Disease

Links: Episode page with related links Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Receive Danny's free weekly email Description: Substantial evidence shows that a high intake of saturated fat in the diet has the potential to significantly raise LDL-C and ApoB-containing lipoproteins in many people, and in turn increase their risk of developing atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD). However, people may raise what seems to some contradictory evidence, or what is sometimes thought of as a paradox: the impact of full-fat dairy on CVD risk. This paradox arises because given the saturated fat content of full-fat milk, yogurt and cheese, we typically don’t see the same impact on blood lipid profiles. In addition, epidemiology can often show such foods in a favourable light. And the dairy fat story gets more interesting when we look at evidence showing there is a huge difference in the impact of consuming different dairy foods (e.g. butter vs cheese/yogurt). So this leads to many questions that people rightly ask, which we aim to address in this episode. Questions such as: Why doesn’t increased dairy consumption lead to same increases in CVD risk as other saturated fat sources? Do results from full-fat dairy studies prove that saturated fat isn’t a problem? What is it about cheese/yogurt that makes it different to butter? How do low-fat and full-fat dairy compare? Diets including/excluding dairy: how to compare? Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
4/11/202322 minutes, 11 seconds
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#477: Effect of Different Diets on Cholesterol, Lipoproteins and Discordance – Ian Davies, PhD

Links: Go to episode page (with resources) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Receive our free weekly emails Introduction: Discordance between low-density lipoprotein particle (LDL-p) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) occurs when the levels of these two biomarkers do not match up as expected. Discordance between Apolipoprotein B (ApoB) and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL-C) is similar, except rather than counting just LDL particles, ApoB is a measure of the numbers of lipoproteins that have an ApoB attached. Discordance between ApoB and LDL-C can lead to either an underestimate or overestimate of ASCVD risk. And therefore there may be important implications for someone who does have discordance. Additionally, it is such cases that suggest that a measurement of ApoB may provide additional information beyond traditional lipid measures in assessing a person’s cardiovascular risk. Recent work from researchers at Liverpool John Moores University has investigated whether discordance is associated with certain dietary patterns. In this episode, one of the researchers involved, Dr. Ian Davies, is on the podcast to discuss this work in addition to wider questions in the diet-lipids-CVD field that remain to be answered.
4/4/202354 minutes, 24 seconds
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#476: Fructose in Perspective – Dietary Villain or Misunderstood Nutrient?

Links: Go to episode page (w/ resources) Subscribe to PREMIUM Receive Danny's free weekly email Description: Fructose is a type of sugar that is commonly found in fruits, vegetables, and many processed foods. In recent years, there has been a lot of discussion and debate about the impact of fructose on health, with some claiming that it is a major contributor to obesity, diabetes, and other chronic diseases. However, these claims are often at odds with what the scientific literature actually says. One of the most common claims about fructose is that it is inherently “bad” for health, and that consuming too much of it can lead to a wide range of health problems. This idea has been popularized in many popular diet and health books, and has led to a widespread fear of fructose among the general public. However, many of these claims are based on outdated or oversimplified research, and do not reflect the complex reality of how fructose interacts with the human body. Another common claim about fructose is that it is uniquely responsible for the current obesity epidemic, and that reducing fructose intake is the key to weight loss and better health. While it is true that excessive consumption of sugary foods and beverages can contribute to weight gain and other health problems, the idea that fructose is uniquely responsible for these issues is not supported by the scientific evidence. In fact, many studies have found that total sugar intake, rather than fructose specifically, is the most important factor in the development of obesity and related health problems. In this episode we discuss the unique aspects of fructose metabolism, why some studies appear to show unique harm of fructose, and the implications of this for dietary choices. Go to episode page
3/28/202352 minutes, 21 seconds
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#475: Is Food Addiction Real? – Charlotte Hardman, PhD

Links: Go to episode page Subscribe to Premium Sign-up for our free weekly email: The Sigma Synopsis Description: The idea of food addiction has gained a lot of attention in recent years, as obesity rates continue to rise around the world. Many people struggle with overeating and find it difficult to resist certain foods, leading to a cycle of guilt and shame. The concept of food addiction suggests that there may be a biological explanation for this behavior, and that certain foods may be especially “rewarding” to the brain, leading to a kind of addiction. To help look at the evidence in this area, our guest in this episode is Dr. Charlotte Hardman, who is a leading researcher in the field of appetite and obesity. Dr. Hardman’s research focuses on the psychological and biological processes that contribute to overeating and obesity. She is particularly interested in the concept of “food addiction,” which suggests that certain foods may be addictive and lead to compulsive overeating, similar to substance addiction. In this podcast, we will explore the latest research on food addiction with Dr. Hardman. We will delve into the evidence for and against the idea of food addiction, as well as discuss the potential implications for public health and policy. Join us as we explore this fascinating topic and learn more about the complex relationship between food and the brain.
3/22/202355 minutes, 54 seconds
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SNP15: AMA – Semaglutide, “Carni-nutrients”, Sweating From Caffeine, & More

Questions Answered in this AMA [00:03:01] Mechanisms that keeps weight stable over time? [00:11:52] Semaglutide: Game-changer? Weight regain? [00:30:42] How to further lower LDL-C? Can I avoid statins? [00:43:52] Glyphosate: A cause for concern in food? [00:48:30] High caffeine intake is making me sweat more. What’s going on? [00:55:16] Should I avoid non-organic meat? [01:00:08] Is there evidence on iron and zinc co-ingestion for anemia of prematurity? [01:03:09] “Carni-nutrients”: Can vegan diets cause brain issues due to lower choline, creatine and taurine? [01:12:10] Are energy drinks bad for us? [01:17:43] What are some resources for doctors and patients that simply explain obesity & treatments? This is an episode exclusive to Premium subscribers. To listen to the full episode you’ll need to subscribe. However, you can listen to a preview here.  
3/17/202327 minutes, 5 seconds
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#474: Glucose Peaks & Variability – Is Lower Better?

Links: Go to episode page (with links & resources) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Receive our free weekly email, The Sigma Synopsis About This Episode: Often claims are made recommending that people should aim to keep peaks in blood glucose low in terms of both magnitude and frequency. And while many claims about blood glucose “spikes” are incorrect or purposefully exaggerated to grab attention, there are some reasonable and interesting hypotheses put forward in relation to blood glucose variability and excursions. For example, interesting questions have been raised in relation to the impact of blood glucose excursions in seemingly normoglycemic and/or healthy people. In this episode, we look at three specific elements of this: average blood glucose, glucose variability, and glucose peaks. All in the context of people without prediabetes or type diabetes, who have typical blood glucose measures in the ‘normal’ range. Specifically, we look at three hypothesized recommendations made elsewhere: “The lower you average blood glucose (HbA1C) is better, even if already in normal range” “The more you can minimize glucose variability, the better.” “Minimizing the number of glucose “peaks” is important, even if they don’t meet the threshold for hyperglycemia” Can normoglycemic people benefit from further reducing these measures? Let’s take a look…
3/13/20231 hour, 22 minutes, 46 seconds
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#473: Diet & Depression (What Do We Actually Know?) – Nicole Lippman-Barile, PhD

Links: Episode page (with more links) Subscribe to Premium Introduction Depression is a common disorder and is a leading cause of disability worldwide. Depression results from a complex interaction of social, psychological, and biological factors. Diet has been one area that has been suggested in playing a role; from potential for exacerbating symptoms to being a treatment. And while some associations have been noted, many claims far exceed what (little) evidence exists. Online it is common to see people claiming certain diets can treat depression or that certain foods will improve outcomes. However, does the evidence match such claims? In trials that have been published on diet-depression, there has been considerable media attention and fanfare around some results. For example, the SMILES trial published out of Australia. However, some have raised considerable concerns about the interpretation of such findings. In this episode, clinical psychologist Dr. Nicole Lippman-Barile is on the podcast to discuss what we currently know about diet and depression, what issues exist with current studies, and why many nutrition-mental health studies are being incorrently interpreted.
3/7/20231 hour, 12 minutes, 40 seconds
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#472: Compared To What? – Understanding Food Substitution Analysis & Adjustment Models

Links: Subscribe to Premium Go to this episode's page (with links) Live event: London - March 18th Receive 'Sigma Synopsis' emails Description: When thinking about the effect of eating or not eating a certain food or nutrient, we can’t consider this in isolation. Meaning, we need to evaluate the impact within the context of what such an inclusion/exclusion does to an individual’s overall diet pattern. Thinking about this concept, the phrase “compared to what?” has been colloquially used. And while this is an important idea, there has been some misapplication of this principle. In nutrition science, this is related to the concept of food or nutrient “substitution”. And this concept is crucial to understanding the issues that can arise in nutrition studies, particularly when it comes to single food analyses in nutritional epidemiology. This concept of substitution is quite intuitive in controlled feeding studies. However, it is not as obvious when considering nutrition epidemiology studies. As noted by Ibsen & Dahm (2022): “Whereas studying the effects of eating one food instead of another is typically explicit in interventional study designs, it is often implicit and sometimes hidden in analyses of observational studies.” However, in nutrition epidemiology substitution is still happening, but it typically emerges as a consequence of adjustment models. In nutritional epidemiology, it is essential to adjust for confounders. E.g., one vital adjustment is often for total calorie intake. However, when our exposure is a specific food/nutrient, we must think about confounding by other foods. So knowing what, and how, a study is adjusting for variables helps us interpret it better. In this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan and Danny Lennon discuss these crucial ideas of food substitution, adjustment models, and “compared to what?”. Go to this episode's page (with links)
2/28/202353 minutes, 19 seconds
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#471: Salt & Bone Health – Is There Cause For Concern?

Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Live Event: London, UK Receive the Sigma Synopsis emails    About This Episode: Does sodium lead to calcium losses? Do high-salt diets harm bone health? At what thresholds could there be an impact? Does any of this change our recommendations around salt/sodium intake? Thanks to Sigma Nutrition Premium subscriber Kate Wall for submitting a question in the member’s area that inspired this episode. Kate asks: “Salt can impact calcium excretion in the urine and it is said that a high salt diet can increase risk of osteoporosis as it draws calcium from the bone and excretes it. How much of an impact does dietary salt intake actually have on bone health and how high would salt intake have to be for this to be a concern? Obviously high salt intakes are not something to aim for in general, but just wondered if this was a mechanism that could remove meaningful amounts of calcium in a way that I should be advising around this in those that we work with as nutritional professionals. Thanks!” So in this episode, Danny and Alan look at some of the evidence in this area to see if there are impacts that have pragmatic implications for nutrition and medical professionals, as well as health-concious people.
2/21/202357 minutes, 33 seconds
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SNP14: Nutrition Coaching Roundtable (Helms, Huschtscha & Baker)

Links: Subscribe to Premium Episode page   Description: Nutritionists, dietitians and other health & fitness professionals face many challenges when attempting to help their clients and in understanding what approaches are best in a given situations. There are often discussions around improving client adherence to dietary recommendations. However, sometimes we need to think deeper about this topic. Is there really just a tool to fix this? Or could the problem be the recommendations themselves? Similarly, while quantifying dietary intake in terms of calorie and macronutrient amounts can be useful in some cases, it’s clear that this isn’t the best approach in many cases. So for coaches aiming to help athletes or those with body composition goals, how do we use “non-tracking” approaches effectively? This episode brings you a roundtable discusssion between three accomplised and insightful nutrition professionals; Dr. Eric Helms, Dr. Zoya Huschtscha, and Mackenzie Baker. In the episode we discuss the above-mentioned topics and more.
2/14/20239 minutes, 42 seconds
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#470: Melatonin, Meal Timing & Glucose Tolerance

Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Live event in London, UK Description: Meal timing has been a popular, and at times controversial, topic of interest in nutrition. Despite much speculation over the years as to potential advantages to specific meal timing or meal frequencies, for many outcomes there seems to be little pragmatically meaningful difference. For example, when accounting for calorie and macronutrient intake, there is little to no effect of meal timing on body composition, blood pressure, and energy expenditure. However, just because there is little evidence for the importance of meal timing in relation to those outcomes, this should not be interpreted to mean there is no impact of meal timing on all health outcomes. One area where meal timing may be an important factor is in relation to glucose tolerance and glycaemic control. For example, it has been consistently shown that eating at ‘biological night’ leads to worse postprandial glucose responses. And this could be particularly important for those with insulin resistance, pre-diabetes or type 2 diabetes. Some of the most influential work in this area has been done by Marta Garaulet’s lab at the University of Murcia. One of the central aspects they have published on has been the interaction between food timing and melatonin levels, and how this in turn affects glucose tolerance and cardiometabolic markers. In this episode, Danny and Alan discuss the topic of meal timing and glucose tolerance, using a recent study from Garaulet et al. to highlight some important concepts.
2/7/20231 hour, 11 minutes, 14 seconds
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#469: Chrononutrition – New Findings & Updated Views

Research in the field of ‘chrononutrition’ has continued to grow in the past couple of years, with some important studies being published in recent times. Chrononutrition is a research area that looks at the relationship between temporal (time-related) eating patterns, circadian rhythms, and metabolic health. While past podcast episodes have covered various aspects of chrononutrition, the latest research has added important pieces to the puzzle and has lead to both Alan and Danny updated their views on certain sub-topics. In this episode, we look at recent research (including that from the Big Breakfast Project) and how understanding and conclusions from the field have shifted over time. Dr. Flanagan also gives some insight into the important chrono work published in the UK, which his dotoral work contributed to. Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Live event: London
1/31/20231 hour, 18 minutes, 17 seconds
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#468: High Sugar Intakes Without Excess Calories: Harmful or Benign?

There is almost universal agreement that excess added sugar in the diet is detrimental to health. However, much of this negative health impact clearly relates to the ability of high sugar intakes to drive excess calorie intake and fat accumulation, which cause health issues. But what about situtaions of where there is not a calorie surplus (hypercaloric diet) or weight gain? Some people claim that sugar is inherently damaging. While others push back and claim sugar is only a problem in the context of a hypercaloric diet. So which position is more accurate? What evidence do we have? In this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan and Danny Lennon take a look at situations of eucaloric (or even hypocaloric) diets, and what impact sugar has. Specifically, they investigate: in a situation where someone is not overconsuming calories or gaining weight, what health impacts do added sugars have? And if there are these calorie-independent effects, at what thresholds do they occur? Links: Episode page (incl. all links) Live event: London, UK - March 2023
1/24/20231 hour, 34 minutes, 20 seconds
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SNP13: Intuitive Eating Debate – with Jackson Peos, PhD

This episode brings you a “debate” between Danny Lennon and Dr. Jackson Peos on the utility of intuitive eating. Specifcally, they make a case for and against, respectively, for the position: “Intuitive eating can be recommended eating approach for those with fitness and/or physique goals”. This episode is a Premium-exclusive episode, so you’ll need to be a Premium subscriber to listen to the full discussion but you can hear a preview here. Links: Subscribe to Premium Live event: London, UK - March 2023 Buy UEBC 22 Replay
1/17/202312 minutes, 26 seconds
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#467: Iron Issues in Athletes – Prof. Pete Peeling

Iron is an important nutrient for athletes, given that it is used for oxygen transport and energy production. However, research on athletes often reports a relatively high prevalence of iron deficiency. Common symptoms of low iron status like lethargy, fatigue and negative mood states are naturally of concern to athletes. But there is also the potential for low iron to directly impact work capacity. Therefore, maintaining adequate iron status (and knowing the signs of iron deficiency) is crucial for athlete health and performance. In this episode, Professor Pete Peeling of the University of Western Australia discusses the role of iron in performance, iron deficiency in athletes, the impact of exercise-induced inflammation, and other important issues. Links: Episode page Live event: London, UK - March 2023
1/10/202350 minutes, 45 seconds
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#466: Iron Absorption from Foods & Supplements – Prof. Paul Sharp

Iron deficiency is a prevalent issue. Worldwide, it is the leading nutritional deficiency. And although there is lower prevalence in high-income countries, a significant number of people are still affected. Iron deficiency may be a result of too little iron coming in (i.e., via diet choices or low absorption), or from excess losses (e.g., commonly from blood losses). Understanding how these can impact iron status is crucial for both accurate diagnosis and treatment. In relation to dietary iron, the source of iron is a common talking point, as there are two forms of iron that we can consume. Heme iron is found in meat, fish, and poultry, while non-heme iron is found in plant foods. It is known that heme iron is more readily absorbed than non-heme iron. However, there is much more to this story that makes things complicated. To discuss some of the nuances of iron bioavailability, absorption, and metabolism, leading expert in the area Professor Paul Sharp of King’s College London is on the podcast. Prof. Sharp discusses crucial aspects of dietary iron sources, bioavailability, supplementation, and impacts in the body. Links: Episode page (with links/resources) Subscribe to Premium Live event: London, UK - March 2023
1/3/20231 hour, 55 seconds
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#465: Diagnosing & Treating Iron Deficiency & Excess – Austin Baraki, MD

Iron is involved in a whole range of biological processes and a consistent supply of iron is crucial for cellular turnover. But despite iron being an essential mineral for human function, it is highly toxic to cells and tissues if present at high levels. Therefore an intricate and tight regulation of iron is necessary. If iron status gets too low, iron-deficiency anaemia can result. In such situations there is a shortfall in hemoglobin production, which leads to a range of issues in the body. So how is iron status measured? Which biomarkers are most useful? Where can errors in diagnosis occur? What problems arise with iron deficiency? And what problems occur with iron overload? In this episode, these questions (and more) are put to Dr. Austin Baraki, a practicing Internal Medicine physician and Assistant Professor of Medicine at William Beaumont Army Medical Center in Texas. This episode is the first in a three-part series on iron. Links Episode page & relevant links Subscribe to Premium Live event in London
12/27/20221 hour, 19 minutes, 48 seconds
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#464: Do Sugar Taxes Work?: Evidence on Potential Policies - Kathryn Backholer, PhD

The current food environment is continuously highlighted as a problem for public health. And so there is a strong focus in both public policy and research circles to determine which strategies could lead to a healthier food environment. One potential strategy that is widely recommended by public health experts is the use of fiscal/taxation policies to decrease the consumption of unhealthy foods and beverages. By making unhealthy foods and beverages relatively more expensive than healthy foods and beverages it is hoped that this would alter the composition of the average diet in a favorable manner. This is based on economic theory and evidence showing that most foods are relatively price “inelastic”. This means that increases in the prices of particular foods can be expected to lead to reductions in the purchase of those foods. But there have also been some concerns raised about the potential effectiveness of strategies aimed at taxing a certain nutrient (e.g. sugar) or a group of foods. There are worries that such policies wouldn’t lead to healthier diets; with people either not changing behavior or just substituting in other processed foods that industry has formulated to avoid a specific nutrient tax. So what does the current evidence say? With a number of countries having implemented a range of taxes or health levies, what lessons can we learn from these? And what does the best public health nutrition currently tell us about the likely effectiveness of different policies or interventions? To get to some evidence-based answers, Dr. Kathryn Backholer, an Associate Professor at Deakin University, is on the podcast to discuss the current state of the evidence on various taxes and levies on different nutrients and unhealthy foods. Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Live event in London
12/20/202244 minutes, 51 seconds
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SNP12: The Big Breakfast Study

In October 2022, Ruddick-Collins et al. published results of an RCT looking at the impact of different calorie distributions across the day. This study was from the ‘Big Breakfast Study’ project, primarily from the University of Aberdeen. In this study, 30 subjects underwent two 4-week calorie-restricted diets that were matched for calories. One diet was “morning-loaded”, meaning that daily calories were distributed as 45% at breakfast, 35% at lunch, and 20% at dinner. The other was “evening-loaded”, with an opposing calorie distribution; i.e., 20% at breakfast, 35% at lunch, and 45% at dinner. The trial received a lot of commentaries online after it was published. However, much of it lacked sufficient context, nuance, and understanding of the implications. In this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan, who was one of the researchers involved in some of the work of the Big Breakfast Study, gives an insight into the recently published paper by Ruddick-Collins et al., and highlights some important aspects to be aware of. This is an episode exclusive to Sigma Nutrition Premium subscribers. To listen to the full episode and access the transcript, you must subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Links: Subscribe to Premium Links to mentioned studies
12/13/202230 minutes, 19 seconds
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#463: Do Vegan Diets Cause Depression?

In this episode, the Sigma team explores the question: “Do vegan diets increase the risk of depression?” This is a question that emerges from a few different places. First, it’s common to hear such a claim from proponents of largely animal-based diets. Some reference is often made about how vegan diets can, at best, worsen symptoms or, at worst, even cause depression. Or conversely, they may state that moving away from a plant-based diet will improve mental health outcomes, including depression. And while all of those specific claims aren’t within the scope of this episode, such claims do get people wondering if a plant-exclusive diet is actually a cause of various mental health ailments. But is there a basis for such claims? In this episode, we explore the evidence from two ends: 1) research related to the proposed mechanisms by which a vegan diet could cause problems, and 2) outcome data looking at the impact of such diets. Links: Subscribe to Premium Episode notes page Live event: London, UK (early bird ends Dec 19)
12/6/20221 hour, 41 minutes, 39 seconds
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#462: Gyorgy Scrinis, PhD – Ultra-Processed Foods, Nutritionism and Current Food Systems

Links: Show notes page (incl. study links & related episodes) Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Live event in London, UK About this episode: Over the past decade, the increasing uptake and acceptance of the Nova food processing classification system has placed focus on one of the categories in Nova; ultra-processed foods (UPFs). Ultra-processed foods (UPFs) are products created from deconstructed (and recombined) food components, usually with the goal of creating a highly palatable, convenient, and profitable product. This typically means such products are high in nutrients of content (e.g. sugar, sodium, saturated fat, etc.). But in addition, they have other characteristics that may make them detrimental to health, particularly when they replace unprocessed or minimally processed foods in the diet. There is now clear evidence showing that when such products make up a large proportion of the diet, such a dietary pattern has negative health effects. However, there are still many unanswered questions and many debates within nutrition science about how to best classify UPFs, to what degree they need to be limited, whether some can be beneficial, and what to do with policy going forward. To offer one perspective on this issue, Associate Professor of Food Politics and Policy at the University of Melbourne, Dr. Gyorgy Scrinis, is on the podcast to discuss his work in the area. While we have discussed the problem of reductionism in nutrition science previously on the podcast, Dr. Scrinis’ use of the term ‘reductionism’ does differ a bit from the way others use the term. For example, he suggests that nutrition science has been too reductive even at the food-level and dietary-pattern level. His work on ultra-processed foods and the Nova classification system has attempted to understand the technological and corporate character of ultra-processed foods, the power of food corporations, and how food corporations shape and capture nutrition science for the purposes of promoting and defending their products.
11/29/20221 hour, 10 minutes, 11 seconds
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#461: Prof. Emma Boyland – How Food Marketing Impacts Eating Behaviour

Research has shown that food marketing strongly impacts children’s eating behaviour. Marketing influences food purchase requests, purchases, and preferences. And the evidence of a relationship between food marketing exposure and obesity meets epidemiological criteria for causality. The evidence suggests that the impact of food marketing is a function of both exposure to the marketing message and its persuasive power. What does the current evidence tell us about the exact effect of marketing on food choices? And beyond that, what strategies are likely to yield the best results in terms of mitigating the harms of food marketing on eating behaviour, particularly in children and adolescents? To help answer these questions, subject area expert Prof. Emma Boyland is on the podcast to discuss what is currently known. Links:  Episode page, resources & links Subscribe to Premium
11/22/20221 hour, 37 seconds
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SNP11: The Death of Domain Expertise

Never before has there been greater access to information about nutrition and health. But never before has there been such a low barrier to being seen as an “expert”. There are large numbers of people getting information from, and basing their health decisions on, people who don’t have direct expertise in the field in which they are talking about. Moreover, some promote the lack of domain expertise as a feature, not a bug. They claim that those that were conventionally seen as domain experts are either brainwashed, lazy in their thinking, or outright corrupt. And the solution is instead to look to those with a fresh perspective that can illuminate us on the “truth”. In this episode, Alan and Danny discuss this “death of domain expertise”, how it plays out online, and its ramifications for people’s ability to get good information. This is a Premium-exclusive episode. To listen to the full episode and access the transcript, you must subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Links:  Episode page Subscribe to Premium
11/15/202233 minutes, 18 seconds
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#460: Dr. Priya Sumithran – Body Fat Regulation, Pros & Cons of Weight Loss Interventions, and GLP-1 Receptor Agonists

Obesity increases the risk of a range of chronic diseases and negative health outcomes. And trials where a sufficient amount of weight loss is achieved show health improvements. However, despite the “straightforward” nature of causing weight loss through a hypocaloric diet, it is clear that most people who lose weight will regain some or all of the weight. This is a result of both the physiologic control of intake and expenditure (i.e. homeostatic regulation by the body to avoid staying at a lower body or fat mass), and environmental factors. Diet-induced weight loss is followed by a number of hormonal change that encourage weight regain. So how do we tackle this problem? In this episode, Dr. Priya Sumithran discusses this physiologic control of body mass, in addition to environmental and behavioural factors that make weight loss maintenance difficult. Dr. Sumithran also discusses what this means for setting weight loss targets, choosing the correct intervention, and looking to non-weight-centric approaches for certain individuals. We also discuss the evidence on GLP-1 receptor agonist drugs, such as Semaglutide, as a treatment for obesity. Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Sigma live event - Berlin Sigma recommended resources
11/8/202256 minutes, 10 seconds
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#459: Nicky Keay, MB BChir – Hormones & Healthspan: The Endocrine System Across the Life Course

The endocrine system plays a central role in growth, development, metabolism, reproduction, and physical well-being throughout life. Hormones interact in complex networks, orchestrating a range of critical functions. Over the life course, we experience various changes in hormone levels, fluctuations, patterns, and actions. Additionally, lifestyle factors and disease processes can impact the levels and functions of hormones. In this episode, Dr. Nicky Keay, a medical doctor with expertise in the field of exercise endocrinology, is on the podcast to discuss a variety of endocrine-related issues, including: hormone diurnal variation, bone health, amenorrhoea, HRT, perimenopause, and thinking about hormones and aging. Links: Episode page Subscribe to Premium Sigma live event in Berlin Sigma recommended resources
11/1/202251 minutes, 37 seconds
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What Are Stable Isotopes? How Are Tracers Used in Nutrition Research? (Preview)

Stable isotopes have been used as tracers in human nutritional studies for many years. But what are they? Why do we use ‘tracers’ in nutrition studies? And what are some practical examples? A chemical element can have different forms or ‘isotopes.’ These different isotopes have the same atomic number and position in the periodic table but have different atomic masses and physical properties. An isotope that is not radioactive is said to be ‘stable’. In physiology and metabolism research, stable isotopes are used as ‘tracers.’ As the name implies, it allows us to ‘trace’ the fate of compounds, thus giving a very detailed insight into the metabolism of nutrients and the regulation of many disease processes. In this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan explains what stable isotope tracers are, how they are used to answer nutrition science questions and some examples that you may come across. This is a ‘Nutrition Science Explained’ episode. These episodes are exclusive to Sigma Nutrition Premium. To listen to the full episode and access the transcript, you must subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.  
10/25/202212 minutes, 21 seconds
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#458: How Foods Impact Satiety, Hunger & Appetite

Given the negative consequences of consistent overconsumption of food (leading to a caloric surplus), having a dietary intake that is of appropriate calorie intake is an important aspect of long-term health. Therefore, thinking about which foods and diets can help promote appropriate satiety to keep calorie intake in check is a key focus for many researchers and practitioners. There is a complex system of human appetite control. This appetite system influences food consumption and associated motivational drives such as hunger, as well as interacting with and being influenced by energy expenditure. Satiety is an important psycho-biological process involved in the expression of human appetite, inhibiting hunger and intake following food or beverage consumption. In this episode, the Sigma team discusses the human appetite system, how different nutrients and foods impact satiety, and the implications of this research. Links: Subscribe to Premium Show notes for this episode Live event in Berlin, Germany Sigma Recommended Resources
10/18/20221 hour, 35 minutes, 54 seconds
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#457: Austin Robinson, PhD – Salt Sensitive vs Salt Resistant, Impacts of Sodium on Health, & Racial Differences in Risk

Hypertension (elevated blood pressure) is a condition that significantly increases the risk of several diseases and is a major cause of premature death worldwide. In the US, recent estimates suggest that about half of the adult population has hypertension. At a population level, high sodium intake is one of the main dietary risk factors. All population health guidelines recommend keeping sodium intake below certain levels. While, on average, blood pressure correlates with sodium intake, there is a wide range of responses on an individual level. People who see increasing sodium intake lead to increased blood pressure are termed “salt sensitive”. Others, however, don’t see much change in blood pressure with increased dietary sodium. Such individuals are classed as “salt resistant”. In this episode, Assistant Professor at Auburn University, Dr. Austin Robinson, is on to discuss whether people who are salt resistant need to keep their sodium intake low or not. And other individual and group differences that exist for hypertension risk and sodium physiology? Links: Subscribe to Premium Episode overview Live event in Berlin Recommended Resources
10/11/20221 hour, 9 minutes, 35 seconds
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#456: Prof. Glenn McConell – Glucose Uptake During Exercise & Muscle Insulin Sensitivity

Exercise improves metabolic control both via increasing muscle glucose uptake during muscle contractions by insulin-independent mechanisms and by increasing skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity after physical activity. A reduction in skeletal muscle insulin sensitivity is an early event in the development of not only prediabetes, metabolic syndrome, and type 2 diabetes but is also associated with other conditions such as cardiovascular disease and some cancers. One of the researchers that has been at the forefront of research in this area for many years is Professor Glenn McConell. In this episode we discuss glucose uptake during and after exercise, looking at both insulin-dependent and insulin-independent mechanisms. In addition we discuss the crucial importance of muscle insulin sensitivity and some important research breakthroughs on the topic. Links: Subscribe to Premium Episode show notes Live event: Berlin
10/4/20221 hour, 3 minutes, 21 seconds
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#455: Jill Joyce, PhD – Improving the Diets of Tactical Populations

The term ‘tactical populations’ has been applied to those working in law enforcement, fire, first responders, and military. In addition to the importance of their work, the work they do itself presents some challenges for health and nutrition. Despite the fact that such individuals make up a significant number of the population and their work plays a crucial role in society, there is currently very little research on fire and law enforcement nutrition. Most research is on the prevalence of disease and the occupational risk factors and related pathophysiology. Lifestyle research, descriptive and interventions, is way behind. Dr. Jill Joyce is the co-director of the OSU Tactical Fitness and Nutrition Lab at Oklahoma State University. She does research looking at real-world interventions in these populations, particularly firefighters, in an attempt to improve their diets and health. In this episode, we look at both the theoretical and pragmatic realities of improving diet and health in firefighters and some other tactical populations. Links: Subscribe to Premium Access show notes Live event in Berlin
9/27/202247 minutes, 23 seconds
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SNP9: AMA – Blood Pressure, LDL Lowering, PCOS & More!

In this Premium-exclusive ‘Ask Me Anything’ episode, Alan & Danny answer a range of listener questions. Topics include obesity rates, lowering blood pressure, cholesterol drugs, PCOS, and what issues they have changed their minds on. See the full list of questions below. [02.37] Do you feel that there is hope (or an effective way forward) for obesity rates to come down? Based on your response, why/why not? [11.28] In this field, it seems like so many of us have had positions we’ve held very seriously that we now see as poorly supported by research, or just have a significant paradigm change. It would be great to hear you look back to how your views have evolved over the years. [30.34] Apart from lowering salt intake and eating foods high in potassium are there other things you can take or do to reduce blood pressure? [40.34] What is the best ratio of DHA vs EPA to increase my Omega 3 index? [46.20] Statins v Ezetimibe: Differences between the two? Mechanism of action? Are there situations, conditions, genetic markers where one may work better than the other? [56.20] I’m starting a PhD in the fall concerning the pathophysiology of metabolic diseases and I’d like to take some courses that would help me in my research. Would you have any recommendations for a beginner scientist? [59.01] Is astaxanthin a good substitute for algae oil for someone who follows a vegan diet? [60.45] Do you have any suggestions how to better manage hunger in obese women with PCOS? [64.33] Do you have any recommendations for anyone wanting to get involved in chrononutrition research? Links: Subscribe to Premium Live Event: Berlin, Germany on November 26th 2022 Episode transcript Resources mentioned in this episode
9/20/202215 minutes, 3 seconds
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#454: Eric Helms, PhD – Plant or Animal Protein: Rethinking Protein & Muscle

When it comes to eating to promote muscle hypertrophy, muscle repair/recovery and maintenance of mass and function, protein has been an obvious focus. Indeed muscle mass and quality are dependent on the continuous remodeling of skeletal muscle proteins. This is related to the amount of muscle protein balance, i.e. the net difference between muscle protein synthesis (MPS) and muscle protein breakdown (MPB). Because of this, MPS has long been used as a proxy measure for muscle repair and/or growth of muscle. Protein feeding increases MPS, with the amino acid leucine having a specifically strong impact on MPS. Therefore both the dose of protein and the amino acid profile of the protein have been looked at to assess which protein sources are “superior” for muscle mass and function. This has typically led to viewing animal proteins as better than plant proteins. But many assumptions are layered into conversations on the topic. In this episode we explore some important points that are often neglected. Is MPS as reliable as we assume? Does the amino acid profile tell us everything about the anabolic effect of a protein? Does dose and timing matter as much as we think? How does the picture change when we look at whole foods or mixed meals? Link: Subscribe to Premium Go to show notes Live Event: Berlin, Germany MASS Research Review Muscle & Strength Pyramids: Training & Nutrition Books
9/13/20221 hour, 25 minutes, 26 seconds
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#453: Nick Gant, PhD – Cognitive Performance: Impact of Caffeine, Nicotine & Creatine (Rebroadcast)

The brain plays a central role in both physical and psychological function and performance. The brain also has a very high energy demand. In addition, fatiguing conditions can cause impairment of cognitive performance. One area of research in neurometabolism related to the potential use of nutrients on improving cognitive function, as well as “rescuing” the fatigue-related declines in performance. Nick Gant is Director of the Exercise Neurometabolism Laboratory at the University of Auckland. His group uses interdisciplinary approaches from the nutritional sciences and neurosciences to investigate the role of nutrition in brain health and performance. Nick is particularly interested in foods and supplements that prevent brain fatigue and improve physical and cognitive function. Subscribe to PREMIUM
9/6/20221 hour, 12 minutes, 5 seconds
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#452: Stuart Phillips, PhD - Bacterially Synthesized Whey, Plant vs. Animal Proteins, Muscle & Extended Fasts, & Much More

This episode was oringally published as one of our “Expert – ask me anything” (AMA) episodes, which we published for Premium prescribers. In such bonus episodes, we collect questions from Premium subscribers and ask them direct to a world-class expert and past podcast guest. If you’re interested in subscribing to Sigma Nutrition Premium, then check all the details here. In this episode Prof. Stu Phillips takes questions about synethized whey protein, plant proteins, post-exercise MPS, and many other topics related to protein, muscle function and ageing.
8/30/202255 minutes, 33 seconds
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#451: Potassium & Blood Pressure: Influence of Sex & Sodium

It has been consistently shown in research that elevated dietary sodium consumption is associated with high blood pressure and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. In addition, low levels of dietary potassium intake are associated with these same risks. However, there is some debate on how to characterize these relationships. In a study published in European Heart Journal in July 2022, using data from the EPIC-Norfolk study, researchers attempted to answer whether the associations between potassium and both blood pressure and cardiovascular disease: 1) differ between men and women? and 2) depend on daily sodium intake. In this episode Dr. Alan Flanagan and Danny Lennon discuss the details of this study and then link it to the overall evidence base and what this may mean for potassium (and sodium) intake considerations. Access show notes Subscribe to Premium
8/23/202255 minutes, 38 seconds
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#450: Megan Rossi, PhD, RD – Diet For a Healthy Gut: Diversity, Fiber Types & Gut Health Pseudoscience

With the advances in understanding the importance of the gut (including its bacterial contents) for human health, much interest and attention has been placed on how to eat to promote positive ‘gut health’. This has led to many exciting research questions and labs doing fascinating work. However, on the opposite side, it has led to a spike in opportunistic quacks to jump on the wave of enthusiasm and promote diets, supplements, testing kits and products that don’t reflect the current evidence base. So what do we actually know? What aspects of diet should we focus on to improve gut health? For those with gut symptoms (bloating, pain, irritable bowel, etc.) is it possible to include more vegetables and fiber without the pain? In this episode, gut health researcher at King’s College London, Dr. Megan Rossi, discusses some simple heuristics to follow that will likely improve overall health, and promote positive gut health. Access show notes here   Subscribe to Premium
8/16/202253 minutes, 54 seconds
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#449: Do Artificial Sweeteners Increase Cancer Risk? (Study Analysis)

A study published in March 2022 suggested that consumption of artificial (non-nutritive) sweeteners is associated with a 13% increase in risk of cancer. And so in this episode, Dr. Alan Flanagan, Dr. Niamh Aspell, and Danny Lennon discuss this specific study and give their thoughts on what are fair conclusions to come to. Access show notes here Subscribe to Premium here
8/9/20221 hour, 5 minutes, 2 seconds
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#448: Prof. Norman Temple – Can Science Answer Diet-Health Questions?

While we’ve never known more about diet and health, there remain many unanswered questions in nutrition science. However, there is often disagreements on how best to answer these questions, particularly in relation to informing practical diet advise that meaningfully improves health. Prof. Norman Temple is one academic who has written on a number of these issues. One issue he highlights is the large discrepency in the practical value we have attained from cohort studies and RCTs, relative to mechanistic research. Another is the limitations of RCTs for nutrition-specific research questions. In this episode, Prof. Temple discusses these issues, as well as what strategies can actually improve population diet, and thus health. Access show notes here Subscribe to Premium here
8/2/202250 minutes, 8 seconds
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#447: Does Eating Fish Increase Skin Cancer Risk? Study Analysis

A recent study reported a higher risk of developing melanoma in people who ate a relatively high intake of fish. This study caused headlines and it was picked up by many outlets (including the New York Times, Sky News, etc.). In this episode, Alan and Danny dig into the nuances of this study to see if the headlines are justified. Click here for show notes Click here for Premium
7/26/202258 minutes, 34 seconds
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SNP7: Stephan Guyenet, PhD - Ask Me Anything!

This is an “ask me anything” (AMA) episode, which means a world-class expert and past podcast guest comes on the podcast to answer questions submitted by you, our podcast listeners. Stephan Guyenet spent 12 years in academia studying neurodegenerative disease and obesity neuroscience. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Univeristy of Washington, studying the neuroscience of obesity and eating behavior. Previous to that he completed a PhD in neuroscience. Stephan is the author of the popular and well-received book ‘The Hungry Brain‘, which lays out the science behind the brain’s role in obesity. To subscribe to Premium (and get the full episode) go here. Questions Answered In Full Episode “When someone undergoes liposuction or other surgery that removes adipose tissue, is there a sudden reduction in leptin levels? While this may reduce leptin resistance, could the drop in leptin lead to increased hunger over time?” “What is the current research around how chronic energy restriction (or following crash diets) affects appetite hormones and/ or appetite regulation long term? Is there a physiological mechanism influencing overeating attributable to appetite dysregulation caused by chronic dieting? I ask as this is something I am often tackling in my nutrition consultancy but research in biochemical and physiological mechanisms seems lacking.” “Can you talk about the conditions of anorexia and morbid obesity and how they essentially defy the rules of metabolic compensation? In other words- I understand anorexia to be a mental health condition where the individual starves themselves with a purpose to control weight. And morbid obesity being excessive consumption despite over fatness, etc. If the body has these numerous mechanisms by which calorie restriction or calorie over- consumption results in these compensatory processes-driving us to eat more/less slow us down/speed us up, and many more; do these individuals not “hear” these signals or are they just adept at ignoring them or is it that their bodies have lost the ability to compensate for their under or over consumption? Additionally, can anyone become anorexic or morbidly obese? Or is it merely genetics?” “Why do some SDRIs (serotonin–dopamine reuptake inhibitors) and serotonin precursors reduce hunger/appetite? E.g. 5-HTP and Wellbutrin (Bupropion)” “Question about the ideal weight program: As an iOS developer, my instinct is to assume determinism and quantifiability of the entire universe. I believe this to be fundamentally true. But what is hypothetically possible differs from what we can realistically know. I worry that attempts like yours to quantify some seemingly qualitative measures are doomed. I have similar concerns about happiness research. How do you reassure yourself you can really construct an algorithm that deciphers the “ideal weight program” for any given user – do you rely on averages?” a. Quick explanation of the ideal weight program “In 2018 a poster was presented at the annual meeting of the Society for Neuroscience titled ‘The human brain microbiome; there are bacteria in our brains!’ which showed bacteria apparently penetrating and inhabiting the cells of healthy human brains. While the work was preliminary, have you heard of any further work in this area? What is your opinion on the possibility that, if bacteria do inhabit the brain, they could play a part in appetite regulation and/or obesity similar to how the gut microbiome can affect our health?” “It seems like there are significant differences in policies put forth between researchers from biomedical backgrounds and ones from public health policy backgrounds. Dr [David] Allison touched on this during recent interviews, noting that there is very little evidence regarding the efficacy of upstream obesity prevention interventions, such community gardens, combatting food deserts, nutrition education, and cooking classes. On the other hand, governments are increasingly turning to such interventions, as well as policies such as front of pack labelling (Canada, 2022), nutrition facts tables, calorie labelling on menus, as well as the aforementioned ones. Given your research on determinants of health and obesity, what are some of the most promising interventions to prevent NCD morbidity, as well as stones unturned in public health policy? Would you agree with individuals such as Dr Allison that in our current environment, the only efficacious interventions are drugs and bariatric surgery?” Question based on your debate on JRE with Gary Taubes: “Would the insulinogenic effect of protein, specifically something like whey protein which causes an insulin response, be something that should automatically refute Taubes arguments about insulins inherent role in increasing adiposity? Second, would overeating on any macronutrient increase insulin simply because you are eating more food (i.e. hypercaloric)?” “Are there best practices for the maximum duration someone should spend in fat loss (or weight gain) phases? Or perhaps an optimal ratio of fat loss phase duration to “maintenance” phase duration? For example, should fat loss phases be for a maximum of 12 weeks followed by maintenance of at least equal duration before resuming a fat loss phase? “I’m a naturally skinny guy who helps other naturally skinny guys bulk up. I think it largely comes down to a blunted pleasure response to food, smaller stomachs, and/or higher NEAT. A lot of us seem to be taller and more thinly built, too. But why do you think things are things so different for us? Why is it so hard to gain weight? And what can we do about it?” To subscribe to Premium (and get the full episode) go here.
7/19/202216 minutes, 43 seconds
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#446: How Climate Change Impacts Nutrient Status

Climate change refers to long-term shifts in temperatures and weather patterns. These shifts may be natural, such as through variations in the solar cycle. But since the 1800’s, human activities have been the main driver of climate change, primarily due to burning fossil fuels like coal, oil and gas. Climate change has the potential to negatively impact the nutrient value of plants, soil organisms, food stuffs, via a variety of ways. Climate change puts food supplies at risk. Floods, droughts, more intense hurricanes, heatwaves and wildfires can drive down crop yields, destroy livestock, and interfere with the transport of food. And rising carbon dioxide levels from human activity can make staple crops like rice and wheat less nutritious. In this podcast the Sigma team take a look at the evidence on how climate change will impact nutrient status, if left unchecked. There will be also a look at what solutions have been put forward to tackle this issue. This episode will focus more on how climate change impacts nutritional & nutrient status, as opposed to converse (but equally important) issue of how food systems impact climate change. Access show notes here Subscribe to Premium here Attend a live event in London, Dublin or Berlin!
7/13/20221 hour, 14 minutes, 21 seconds
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#445: Dr. Hazel Wallace - Nutrition for Women’s Health

When it comes to specific questions related to diet and health for women, there is often a shortage of consensus answers from research, for a variety of reasons. In addition, there are clearly aspects of biological sex that have implications for health and also the interaction with diet. For example, the impact of the menstural cycle, of menopause, and differences in nutrient requirements. In this episode, Dr. Hazel Wallace discusses some of these key considerations. Some things covered include: the impact of menstrual cycle phase on cravings, at-risk nutrients in pre-menopausal women, functional hypothalamic amenorrhea, interaction of diet and PMS, the physiological changes at menopause and potential role of diet. Click here for show notes to this episode Click here for Premium Click here for live event details
7/7/202254 minutes, 30 seconds
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SNP6: GRADE System: What is it? And How Does it Apply to Nutrition? [Preview]

This is a preview of the second episode in a new series called “Nutrition Science Explained”, in which members of the Sigma team will take a concept commonly mentioned in discussions about nutrition science, and explain what it is, give more background context, and highlight important aspects to know. The goal is to aid listeners to have a deeper understanding of other episodes when such concepts are mentioned. In this episode Alan Flanagan discusses the concept of the GRADE system, and specifially how it applies to evaluating nutrition research and coming to conclusions for practice. GRADE (Grading of Recommendations, Assessment, Development and Evaluations) is a framework for developing and presenting summaries of evidence and provides a systematic approach for grading the quality of evidence and making clinical practice recommendations. In order to listen to the full episode, you will need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.
7/4/20227 minutes, 32 seconds
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#444: Folate – Intake, Genetics & Health Outcomes

Folate (also known as viatmin B9) actually relates to a collection of folates; both natural dietary folates and synthetic forms, primarily folic acid. This folate/folic acid that is consumed via the diet or supplementation is a precursor for the formation of tetrahydrofolate (THF), which is a carbon donor and acts a cofactor for a number of enzymes that play important roles in several processes. In this episode, Alan and Danny discuss the role of folate in the methlyation cycle, the impact of folate insufficiency/deficiency, genetics variatnts of the MTHFR gene (and other genes) that impact folate metabolism, and the impact of folate on health outcomes; including heart disease, birth defects, cancer, and brain health & cognition. Detailed study notes and transcript to this episode
6/28/20221 hour, 12 minutes, 52 seconds
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#443: Kevin Klatt, PhD, RD - Can Choline Help Improve DHA Status?

A recently published study by Klatt and colleagues examined the impact of choline supplementation alongside DHA supplementation, versus DHA supplementation alone, on DHA status in pregnancy. It is known that DHA is a critical nutrient at this time for healthy development of the child. And through a number of mechanisms discussed later, it has been hypothesized that choline could lead to greater DHA status. We discuss: What is the connection between choline and DHA? What is the PEMT pathway? Study design for the choline + DHA trial Are there risks of high-dose choline? Main findings of the trial How DHA status is not just a function of DHA intake, but also methyl metabolism too Issues with omega-3 trials; e.g. not taking baseline status into account Pragmatic recommendations for health professionals and patients Different forms of choline supplements Choline supplementation vs. food-derived choline Access the show notes here   Subscribe to Premium here
6/22/20221 hour, 11 minutes, 19 seconds
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#442: Are Vegetables Detrimental to Health?

In this episode Alan and Danny aim to address the idea that you shouldn’t eat vegetables, or that they aren’t beneficial. We will specifically look at a number of claims that relate to: The claim that vegetables aren’t beneficial for health, or that there is no health benefit to high vegetable intake. The claim that vegetables are actually detrimental to health, and their removal improves health. This episode was orignally published to Sigma Nutrition Premium. If you wish to get more of these Quack Asylum episodes (and lots of other features, including detailed study notes) then subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Click here to access show notes
6/15/20221 hour, 35 minutes, 45 seconds
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SNP5: Prof. Stuart Phillips - Ask Me Anything! [Preview]

This is an "ask me anything" (AMA) episode, with Prof. Stuart Phillips of McMaster University. Prof. Phillips takes questions on protein intake, sources, muscle function, and healthy ageing. To listen to the full AMA, click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium. Questions answered:   [04.28] What is muscle protein balance? [05.32] Why is the focus always on muscle protein synthesis? [07.14] Is MPS a good proxy measure for outcomes we care about (e.g. muscle growth/repair)? [10.37] What's the difference between 'whole body protein synthesis' and 'muscle protein synthesis'? [12.57] We're starting to see commercially available whey that has been produced by bacteria engineered to synthesize whey protein directly from nutritional substrate. It seems like we should expect this to have directly comparable effects given the identical molecular structure. Is there any reason to think this bacterially synthesized whey will have any different effects that whey from dairy? [15.50] Does the literature still show that an additional dose of plant-derived protein is required to equate a similar response from animal protein? [26.39] During post-exercise conditions does protein ingestion stimulate MPS for longer than the usual 2-3 hour period reported in rested conditions? [27.49] Considering the growing interest in fasting protocols (both TRF and longer fasting protocols) - what would you recommend in these circumstances for the preservation / growth of muscle mass. Would it differ between IF/TRF and longer (1-3 day) fasts? [34.58] Is it a waste to take too much protein powder at once because some of it won't get absorbed? [42.50] Does protein powder lose some of its quality if boiling water is added due to protein denaturation? [47.05] Would you please share your opinion about how you evaluate protein status in the body? [50.51] I am now over 60 and lift heavy twice a week. What would be a reasonable body fat % for me to aspire to and how much daily protein should I be targetting in my diet? Subscribe to Premium  
6/13/202217 minutes, 49 seconds
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#441: Julie Abayomi, PhD, RD - Diet During Pregnancy

Consuming a healthy diet during pregnancy is an obvious and accepted recommedation. However, what exactly is a "healthy diet" in this context? In addition, there are specific nutrients which are crucial for the healthy development of the child, including nutrients which may be difficult to consume enough of. In addition there are nutrients and foods that need to limited or avoided during this period. In this episode, researcher and dietitian Dr. Julie Abayomi discusses important nutrients in pregnancy (e.g. iodine, DHA, and folic acid), as well as potentially problematic nutrients/foods (e.g. high-mercury fish and caffeine). In addition, she discusses the current debates about weight gain/loss during pregnancy, as well as what supports are needed for health professionals supporting pregnant women. Click here for show notes Subscribe to Premium
6/7/202255 minutes, 29 seconds
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#440: Are Dietary Guidelines Trying To Kill Us?

It has become common rhetoric for those promoting various types of diets to suggest that dietary guidelines published by government departments are at best, unhealthy, or at worst, causative in driving obesity and chronic disease in the population. While different countries and organizations produce their own guidelines, with slight differences, most of the conversation has focused on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, that are created by the USDA. Often the claims is that following these guidelines actually harms health, rather than promote it. And the guidelines are simply a result of industry forces, long-standing bias, and shoddy science. But do these claims hold up to scrutiny? In this episode Alan and Danny look at some of the arguments put foward, and take a look at the science underpinning dietary guidelines in a number of countries. In this episode: [0.01.46] Examples of arguments put forward stating that it’s not healthy to follow dietary guidelines [0.12.50] History of the development of guidelines in the US & narratives around Ancel Keys [0.23.50] Misrepresentation of what the guidelines say [0.30.49] What are actually in the current Dietary Guidelines for Americans? [0.33.10] Changes to guidelines over time [0.36.05] Other countries’ guidelines: UK, Canada, Nordic countries [0.40.50] Investigating the rise in obesity/disease prevalence with the roll out of the guidelines [0.56.34] Do people follow the guidelines? [1.00.01] The negative role of the food industry [1.03.50] Potential issues with dietary guidelines Links: Subscribe to Premium Show notes to this episode
5/31/20221 hour, 13 minutes, 46 seconds
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SNP4: Detoxification Protocols [Preview]

There have been many claims made about the benefits of a detoxification "protocol" or "plan", based on specific dietary and supplemental regimens. Many of the arguments propose that many things we come into contact with are toxins and they can accumulate and compound in effect over time, causing a range of issues. Therefore, by removing these toxins (via a “detoxification protocol”), we can have better health. And indeed it is well known that there are a large number of toxins in the environment, many of which can potentially be deleterious to health. And it also known that many nutrients are involed in processes of the body's detoxification pathways. However, is there any evidence that a detoxification diet, plan or "protocol" improves health? Is there any reason to suggest targeting certain nutrients or supplements leads to "better detoxification"? And do we need to avoid non-organic food, toothpaste and non-stick frying plans in avoid to avoid these toxins? This Quack Asylum episode evaluates these claims. Study notes available at sigmanutrition.com/detox/ Subscribe to Premium at sigmanutrition.com/premium/
5/26/202216 minutes, 1 second
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#439: Prof. David Jenkins - Lipid-Lowering Diets

With elevated LDL-cholesterol being a causal risk factor for atherosclerotic heart disease, having interventions to lower blood lipids, and in particular LDL-C, are crucial for population health. A number of drugs are now incredibly effective for this, with statins being the most widely used. However, for those who do not wish to take a medication and/or have only a mild elevation, there may be potential for dietary intervention to lower LDL-C to a point where a statin (or other drug) is not needed. A number of aspects of healthy dietary patterns have been known to reduce the liklihood of elevated blood lipids. Most notably perhaps, the ratio of polyunsaturated to saturated fat in the diet (P:S ratio). And an absolute low level of saturated fat in the diet (e.g. However, work by Dr. David Jenkins and collegegues put forward the idea of a “portfolio” of specific nutrients/foods that could additionally lower LDL-C. This became known as the Portfolio Diet. The four primary pillars of this portfolio diet are: soy protein, viscous fibers, nuts, and plant sterols. In this episode, Danny talks to the originator of this work, Dr. Jenkins. Links: Episode show notes Subscribe to Premium Attend Sigma Conference in Dublin
5/23/20221 hour, 2 minutes, 2 seconds
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#438: Diet, Brain Health & Cognitive Function

Some cognitive decline is normal with age. However, more significant cognitive decline is primarily due to disease-induced dementias (such as Alzheimer’s Disease). It also results from neurodegenerative disorders and chronic, prolonged degeneration of our neuronal pathways and functions. Drug discovery for dementias have been largely unsuccessful, leaving no good treatments for this collection of diseases. This had led to research examining areas that may aid in preventing (or more accurately, slowing) cognitive decline. In this episode the Sigma team look at the published data on a variety of nutrients, foods and dietary patterns, including: vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, B vitamins, caffeine, flavanoids, coffee and green leafy vegetables. Subscribe to Premium   [00:02:01] Definitions [00:08:40] What causes cognitive decline? Dementia? Mechanisms of ND pathogenesis. [00:11:33] Why might nutrition play a role? [00:18:18] Dietary patterns [00:26:30] Diet interaction with APOE genotype [00:31:18] Alcohol [00:36:36] Polyphenols - mechanisms [00:43:05] Coffee & Caffeine [00:45:03] Flavanoids [00:51:04] Vitamin D [01:04:22] Omega 3 fatty acids [01:21:42] B vitamins & green leafy veg [01:30:35] Vitamin E [01:38:24] How to assess cognitive health in ageing intervention studies [01:45:28] Concluding thoughts   Show notes to this episode Subscribe to Premium
5/17/20221 hour, 54 minutes, 17 seconds
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#437: GMOs & Genetic Engineering: Harmless or Health-Hazard?

The issue of genetic enginnering in the food system is one that is often charged with emotion and strong opinion. Indeed, there has been much concern voiced over the years about the potential harms to both human health and the environment of genetically-modified (or more accurately, genetically-engineered) crops. Some concern takes the form of outright hysteria, while other concerns are more nuanced and subtle. Among these concerns, which have good evidence to support them? What regulation is currently in place? Why are their differences between the US and the EU? On the opposite side, there are clear advantages to GE crops; including disease resistance, herbicide tolerance, and even enhanced nutritional content. But are these advantages possible without harm? Do the pros outweigh the cons? In this episode, Alan and Danny discuss the current evidence on genetically engineered crops (or GMOs) and their effect on human health, biodiversity, and the economy. 02:02 – Framing of the GMOs debate 13:52 – Key definitions 20:34 – Where do GMOs show up in the food supply? And jurisdiction differences 33:40 – Impacts on human health and nutritional differences 45:16 – Impact on biodiversity 1:01:57 – What’s the deal with glyphosate herbicide? 1:05:34 – Concluding thoughts Access show notes for this episode Subscribe to Premium
5/10/20221 hour, 13 minutes, 15 seconds
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#436: Charlene Van Buiten, PhD – Coeliac Disease & the Search for Novel Therapies

Coeliac disease is an autoimmune disorder stimulated by the ingestion of gluten, a protein found naturally in wheat, barley and rye. The condition affects approximately 1% of the Western world. However, currently the only approved treatment for coeliac disease is adherence to a gluten-free diet for life. Therefore there is much research underway to develop alternative treatment options that may help these patients. One novel antigen-focused therapy that has been hypothesised is the use of plant bioactives. Specifially, in vitro work by Dr. Charlene Van Buiten has looked as whether there is a mechanism by which polyphenols from green tea could be of benefit. Her work shows that these polyphenols can mitigate gliadin-mediated inflammation and intestinal permeability in vitro. Click here for show notes. Click here to subscribe to Premium.
5/3/202239 minutes, 15 seconds
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#435: Fasting & Longevity – Does the Evidence Match the Hype?

Current discussions relating to health focus on longevity. This may include some who look at lifespan extension, some who talk of delaying or “treating” ageing or those who focus on reducing morbidity within the parameters of normal lifespan. One propsed intervention that has garnered a lot of excitement, owing to some interesting research, is the potential use of fasting to increase longevity and/or healthspan. Within this broad category, various different dietary interventions have been suggested, including various forms of intermittent fasting, time-restricted eating, dietary restriction of certain nutritients, calorie restriction or a “fasting-mimicking” diet. But what does the current evidence tell us? Does the evidence actually match the hype? In this episode Dr. Niamh Aspell, Alan Flanagan and Danny Lennon discuss some of the data on fasting and longevity. Go to show notes Subscribe to Premium
4/26/20221 hour, 25 minutes, 45 seconds
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SNP2: "Fish is Bad For You" [PREVIEW]

While dietary guidelines universally include fish as a food group that can be consumed regularly in a healthy dietary pattern, there are some potential risks of fish consumption that get raised. Some have some legitimacy, for example the frequency of consumption of high-mercury fish. However, other claims can go to extremes ("eating fish is bad for you") that are based in ideology rather than evidence. In this Quack Asylum episode, we use a video made by a medical doctor as an example of where quackery can raise its head on this topic. Specifically, there are four claims made in the video that we investigate and see if there is any basis to them. This is a Premium-exclusive episode. In order to listen to the full episode and access the show notes, you will need to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.
4/19/202215 minutes, 41 seconds
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#434: Is a Vegan Diet Really Best for Diabetes?

Many different diets have been put forward as solutions that treat type 2 diabetes. Some will claim the diet “reverses” diabetes, some say it puts it into “remission”, while others more conservatively recommend a diet to manage diabetes symptoms in a healthy way. There has been some debate on the use of terms like reversal, cure or resolution. And recently more clarity has been found in defining each. One of the diets that has been recommended by some for the purposes of “reversing” or treating diabetes is a low-fat, whole food plant-based (WFPB) diet. Specifically, there is a claim that it is superior to other diets in treating diabetes. Some of these claims relate to popular online diet & lifestyle programs that use such a diet. While there is also a number of studies that are commonly cited in support of the claims. In this episode, we evaluate these claims by looking at the published research in this area, across epidemiology, human intervention trials and mechanistic rationale. We also ponder what it means for something to be the “best” diet to treat a chronic disease. Access show notes Attend Sigma event in Dublin, May 2022 Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
4/12/20221 hour, 12 minutes, 3 seconds
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#433: Greg Potter, PhD - The Bidirectional Relationship Between Sleep and Diet

The relationship between our diet and sleep is bi-directional; i.e. sleep impacts diet and diet impacts sleep. Therefore, we can examine the impact of sleep timing, duration and other dimensions on our dietary intake. And then also examine the impat of both overall diet and specific nutrients on improving/worsening sleep. The is clear evidence of distinct, acute effects of restricted sleep time on food preferences, eating behaviour, energy intake, and our underlying metabolic physiology. When it comes to the ability of certain foods or nutrients to improve sleep, often many claims are based on weak evidence or mechanistic reasoning. But there is evidence showing some impacts of certain compounds to either positively or negatively impact sleep. So what is the accurate way to look at this bi-directional relationship? In this episode, Greg Potter, PhD discusses the evidence to date. Dr. Potter received his PhD from the University of Leeds, where his research focused on circadian rhythms, sleep, nutrition, and metabolism. In this episode: 03:15 - Sleep architecture and dimensions of sleep 10:29 - Influence of sleep on diet 35:11 - Chronotypes 53:26 - Impact of diet/meals on sleep 59:50 - Supplements like melatonin and tryptophan 1:20:27 - Rescuing a poor night's sleep - caffeine and nootropics 1:40:31 - Key Ideas segment (Premium only) Click here for show notes.   Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition PREMIUM.
4/6/20221 hour, 42 minutes, 56 seconds
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#432: Bill Harris, PhD - Omega-3 Fatty Acids & Health

Omega-3 fatty acids have long been associated with various health outcomes. A type of omega-3 called alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) is found in various plant foods such as flax seeds or chia seeds. Other omega-3 fatty acids, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), are found typically in marine food sources such as oily fish (e.g. salmon, mackerel) and algae. And while higher intakes of such foods have shown benefit, there has been some confusion over the benefit of such nutrients due to some large omega-3 supplementation trials reporting null findings. So what should we make of the current evidence base? Does supplementation lead to heart disease risk reduction or not? Do we need direct sources of EPA and DHA in the diet? Does ALA have unique benefits? What is an omega-3 index and why is it important? In this episode, fatty acid expert Dr. Bill Harris dives into each of these questions and clarifies what the current evidence tells us about the effect of these fatty acids on our health. Overview: 04:02 - Fatty acid definitions/subtypes 09:14 - Omega-3 status & the Omega-3 Index (O3I) 20:03 - Omega-3 supplementation trials for CVD 41:15 - DHA, brain health, cognition in later life, development, etc 49:45 - Should we be concerned about omega-6 fatty acids? Show note available at: sigmanutrition.com/episode432/ Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium here: sigmanutrition.com/premium/
3/30/202259 minutes, 7 seconds
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#431: Artificial Sweeteners - Health Impacts and ‘Safe’ Levels

There is now widespread use of various "artificial sweeteners" in foods and beverages. Most commonly non-nutritive sweeteners are used to sweeten a products, whilst having less sugar and calories than a traditionally sugar-sweetened version of that product. For example, diet drinks (e.g. diet soda) are most commonly associated with artificial sweeteners. However, they are also in a wide variety of food products and supplements. For a long-time there has been skepticism and alarm raised about their potential health effects. From claims of them increasing our food intake, all the way to causing cancer. And food safety authorities have conducted rigorous examinations of the safety data on each of these compounds. In this episode, the Sigma team discuss the initial research that raised alarm bells, the current process of safety evaluation for non-nutritive sweeteners, the amounts they are consumed in, and the studies published thus far examining their health impacts. Access show notes here. Subscribe to Premium here.
3/24/20221 hour, 24 minutes, 26 seconds
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SNP1: "Don’t Eat Vegetables" [Preview]

In this Premium episode Alan and Danny aim to address the idea that you shouldn’t eat vegetables, or that they aren’t beneficial. Two related ideas have been circulated in some nutrition/health communities on the internet: Vegetables aren’t beneficial for health (or that there is no health benefit to high vegetable intake). Vegetables are actually detrimental to health, and their removal improves health. Such advice is usually defended through some combination of the following claims, which we examine in this episode: Humans are naturally carnivores, or have evolved to thrive on animal foods, and only turn to plants in times of famine. Certain indigenous populations such as the Inuit or the Masai, eat close to no vegetables, yet have robust health. Many of the nutrients present in vegetables can be obtained from animal foods. And beyond that, these nutrients are more bioavabilable when coming from animal sources. Fibre is not an essential nutrient, and high-fibre diets don’t lead to the health benefits that are typically claimed. Certain compounds in plants are actively harmful to us. Some of these compounds are natural pesticides, aimed to hurt us. Others are anti-nutrients, which decrease absorption of other key nutrients. Plants/vegetables contain compounds/nutrients exacerbate clinical conditions such as IBS or autoimmune disorders, and removing all plants including veg, leads to improved outcomes in these people. There is no benefit to a diet high in vegetables compared to a diet with low/no vegetable consumption. Premium subcribers can access the detailed study notes to this episode here.   Click here to subcribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium.
3/17/202221 minutes, 19 seconds
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#430: Soy - Yes, No, Maybe?

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium The popularity of soy foods and soy-based products has been increasing in recent times. This has been particularly the case as a dairy alternative, with people switching to using soy ‘milk’ and soy-based yogurts and cheese. Additionally, soy has become popular as a meat alternative in a variety of dishes for those looking to reduce meat intake. Soy foods such as tofu can be used in recipes in place of meat, and soy-based ‘meat alternatives’ that are vegetarian and vegan friendly have been developed. With this increased prevalence, there has been some debate about the health effects of consuming soy foods and products. On one side, there have potential benefits highlighted of inclusion of soy in the diet. It contains phytoestrogens, which may have beneficial effects. Additionally, it is low in saturated fat, and so is potentially beneficial when used in place of saturated fat-rich foods. However, some have claimed that the phytoestrogens (isoflavones specifically) in soy can be a cause for concern due to the ability of these compounds to mimic the effects of the hormone oestrogen. One common claim is that high soy intake is detrimental for men particularly, as it is “feminizing”; causing gynecomastia, loss of libido and erectile dysfunction. So what is the truth? Is soy a health food? A harmful endocrine disruptor? Or simply neutral? In this episode we dive into the research and look at the evidence to date tells us about these questions. We consider two big health outcomes in particular; cardiovascular disease and breast cancer. And then final discuss what this means practically for our dietary choices. Click here for show notes to this episode Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
3/14/20221 hour, 20 minutes, 15 seconds
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#429: Kevin Hall, PhD & Stephan Guyenet, PhD - Carbohydrate-Insulin Model vs. Energy Balance Model

Click here to subscribe to Premium The pathogenesis of obesity is clearly complex. And the need to have a comprehensive model to explain this pathogenesis is important. One such model, termed the Energy Balance Model, has largely been the consensus paradigm of obesity scientists to this point. Specifically, a recently published paper in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition by Dr. Kevin Hall and his colleagues outlined the various nuances of the model, as well as common misconceptions about the model. However, there are others who propose that this is not the correct model of obesity, but rather that obesity pathogenesis can be better explained by a model called the Carbohydrate-Insulin Model (CIM) of obesity. While this model has been proposed in various forms over the past couple of decades, the most recently published revision/update of this model was that put forward by Dr. David Ludwig and colleagues, in a Perspective published also in the AJCN, in December of 2021. In this episode, Dr. Kevin Hall (lead author of the paper mentioned above) and Dr. Stephan Guyenet are on the podcast to discuss the debate surrounding these two models. Specifically, the discussion will focus in on the Hall et al. (2022) and Ludwig et al. (2021) papers, as well as previous work leading up to both. Click here to access show notes for this episode Click here to subscribe to Premium  
3/8/20221 hour, 46 minutes, 40 seconds
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#428: Food Environments

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Clearly the food choices one makes over time directly impacts health. However, choices are not made in a vacuum; that is, they are not always concious decisions made for rational reasons based on free will. Rather, the choices we make about food are shaped by the contexts within which they are made. The term "food environment" is used to describe the physical, economic, political and socio-cultural contexts in which choices are made about acquiring, preparing and consuming food. As it was put in a paper published as part of The Lancet series on Obesity (2015), modern food environments "exploit people's biological, psychological, social, and economic vulnerability, making it easier for them to eat unhealthy foods". In this episode the Sigma team discuss the implications of this, including a discussion of exactly which environmental conditions impact food choices and the evidence that exists for public health policy that may address the problematic aspects of modern food environments. Topics: Intro to food environment [01:47] Food preferences [11:50] Disposable income/eat well guidelines [39:55] What can we do for a healthier population overall? Top down/bottom up [46:14 Different types of public policy interventions [58:42] Stealth interventions [01:07:24] You can access the show notes to this episode here. Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
3/2/20221 hour, 28 minutes, 37 seconds
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Can You ‘Study’ Nutrition Science with a Podcast? Here’s How. (Including a Time-sensitive Announcement)

Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium: https://sigmanutrition.com/premium/ You love listening to, and learning from, nutrition podcasts. Sigma Nutrition Premium allows you to more effectively do that. Understand topics more deeply Retain more of what you hear Recall specific details long after listening Study nutrition science in an enjoyable way As a Premium subscriber you get exclusive access to: Detailed Study Notes ‘Key Ideas’ Segments Hand-crafted Transcripts Premium-only Episodes Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium: https://sigmanutrition.com/premium/
2/28/202227 minutes, 52 seconds
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#427: Jacob Schepis – Evidence-Based Coaching: Desirable Goal or Unattainable Burden for Fitness Professionals?

Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium It's never been more popular to be seen as "evidence-based" as a fitness professional. And indeed evidence-based practice has been seen as the best way to arrive at coaching decisions. But is "evidence-based practice" actually what fitness professionals are doing? Is it even attainable for most coaches? Does it create a burden on them? Does it even matter if you're actually reading reserach or not? What makes for a competent personal trainer? In this episode, Jacob Schepis is on the show to discuss all these questions and to discuss how he feels evidence-based practice fits within a framework of coaching and coach development. Show notes can be found at sigmanutrition.com/episode427/ Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition PREMIUM to receive Premium-only episodes, bonus segments, and detailed study notes for each episode.
2/22/20221 hour, 3 minutes, 9 seconds
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#426: Jaebian Rosario – How Social Identity and Idealogical Extremes Impact Scientific Discussion

Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Jaebien Rosario is currently a graduate level student in public health at East Stroudsburg University. He has degrees in psychology and philosophy, and has previously worked as a personal trainer and nutrition coach. His interest include science denialism, vaccine hesitancy, the philosophy of science, the sociology of science, and meta science. His current research projects include research proposals for covid-19 and vitamin D trials, research conducted pertaining to local food banks and participation in coalitions for addressing food insecurity in northeast Pennsylvania. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode426/
2/15/202253 minutes, 57 seconds
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#425: Prof. Anna Krylov – When Ideology Hurts Scientific Discourse

Subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Prof. Anna Krylov is a Professor of Chemistry at the University of Southern California (USC), working in the field of theoretical and computational quantum chemistry. She has a M.Sc. in Chemistry from Moscow State University (1990) and a PhD from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, Israel (1996). Krylov is active in the promotion of gender equality in STEM fields, especially in theoretical chemistry. She created the web directory 'Women in Theoretical and Computational Chemistry, Material Science, and Biochemistry'. She has delivered several talks on gender equality in STEM. In June 2021 she published a paper, "The Peril of Politicizing Science," has received over 75,000 views (as of February 2022) and is the all-time highest-ranked article in the Journal of Physical Chemistry Letters (impact factor of 6.5). Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode425/
2/8/20221 hour, 18 seconds
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#424: Is Low Cholesterol Bad For You?!

In this episode Alan and Danny discuss the role of cholesterol in the body and claims that are made suggesting low levels of blood cholesterol are harmful to health. Starting with the premise that cholesterol is an important molecule in the body and plays a role in many processes, discussed are two related claims: we should avoid low cholesterol levels as it can harm our health elevated levels of cholesterol may actually be protective against disease or mortality. The episode also critiques claims about cholesterol being “conditionally essential” and that low LDL-C/ApoB increases risk of mortality, cancer and infection. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode424/
2/1/20221 hour, 31 minutes, 12 seconds
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#423: Zoya Huschtscha, PhD – Understanding Sarcopenia & Potential Interventions

Zoya Huschtscha, PhD is a researcher and assistant lecturer at Monash University (Australia), in the Department of Nutrition and Dietetics. She completed her PhD at the same institution, where her research focused on interventions to prevent and treat sarcopenia; i.e. the loss of muscle function and mass, typically with age. Zoya also has a Masters of Dietetics. In addition to her academic work, she works in private practice as a sports dietitian. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode423/
1/25/202236 minutes, 25 seconds
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#422: Psychobiotics – Can Probiotics Improve Mood-related Disorders?

and the Sigma Statement on the gut-brain axis can be found at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid="425311536639447040">In this episode the Sigma team discuss the research looking at psychobiotics, i.e. probiotics that have health impacts on those with pyschiatric disorders or symptoms. They discuss the origins of the research, the gut-brain axis, mechanisms by which gut microbiota could impact mood, and then the human trials to date that have examined probiotics' effects on mood, anxiety, depression, bipolar disorder and other outcomes. and the Sigma Statement on the gut-brain axis can be found at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Show notes can be found at sigmanutrition.com/episode422/ and the Sigma Statement on the gut-brain axis can be found at sigmanutrition.com/gut-brain-axis/
1/18/20221 hour, 4 minutes, 9 seconds
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#421: Brendon Stubbs, PhD – The Research on Depression & Physical Activity

Dr. Brendon Stubbs, PhD, is a Senior Clinical Lecturer and researcher at King's College London, conducting research in physical activity & mental health, the mind-body interface, and meta-research. He has published over 600 academic papers in several leading journals across multiple scientific fields. He has informed policy guidelines in the UK, Europe and the World Health Organization. Dr. Stubbs is also a clinical physiotherapist, being Head of Physiotherapy at the South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust. He has a MSc in Neurological Rehabilitation & PhD in Pain Medicine & Rehabilitation. Show notes to this episode are available at sigmanutrition.com/episode421/
1/11/20221 hour, 43 seconds
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#420: Cannabis – Kevin Boehnke, PhD & Carrie Cuttler, PhD

Kevin Boehnke is a researcher at the University of Michigan, in the Chronic Pain and Fatigue Research Center. His current research focuses on therapeutic applications of illicit or semi-licit substances (cannabis, psychedelics). His goal is to rigorously assess appropriate use of these substances and to help address the public health harms caused by their criminalization. Carrie Cuttler is an Assistant Professor at Washington State University. Her research at the Health and Cognition Laboratory there focuses on elucidating the potentially beneficial and detrimental effects of chronic cannabis use and acute cannabis intoxication. Her recent work has focused on examining links between cannabis use and mental health (e.g., ADHD, PTSD, OCD, depression, anxiety). Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode420/
1/4/20221 hour, 21 minutes, 2 seconds
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#419: Nathan Bryan, PhD – Role of Nitric Oxide in Human Health

Dr. Nathan Bryan, PhD is an Adjunct Assistant Professor at Baylor College of Medicine. Dr. Bryan has been involved in nitric oxide research for the past 18 years and has made many seminal discoveries in the field. He was the first to demonstrate and discover an endocrine function of nitric oxide via the formation of S-nitrosoglutathione and inorganic nitrite. Dr. Bryan obtained his doctoral degree from Louisiana State University School of Medicine in Shreveport where he was the recipient of the Dean’s Award for Excellence in Research. He pursued his post-doctoral training as a Kirschstein Fellow at Boston University School of Medicine in the Whitaker Cardiovascular Institute. After a two year post-doctoral fellowship, in 2006 Dr. Bryan was recruited to join faculty at the University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston by Ferid Murad, M.D., Ph.D., 1998 Nobel Laureate in Medicine or Physiology. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode419/
12/30/202139 minutes, 21 seconds
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#418: Should We Consume a Direct Source of DHA?

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the debate around whether a direct source of the long-chain omega-3 fatty acid DHA should be recommended. Many people do not consume the marine foods (primarily fatty fish) that contain DHA, and higher DHA intakes, DHA status, and omega-3 indices are predictive of certain health outcomes. But the essential omega-3 fatty acid alpha-linolenic acid (ALA) can be consumed from plant sources. So do those who do not consume direct sources of DHA have lower DHA status? Does this matter? And if so, then what pragmatic conclusions can we come to? All of this is covered in this episode. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode418/ Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
12/21/20211 hour, 17 minutes, 44 seconds
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#417: Austin Baraki, MD – What Do Nutrient Blood Tests Actually Tell Us?: Understanding Biomarkers

Dr. Austin Baraki joins Danny and Alan to critically evaluate the assumption that blood levels of a nutrient directly tell us about overall nutritional status. With many people getting blood tests done outside of clinical settings, there is significant risk of misinterpretation of what these measures mean. In this episode we discuss measures of calcium, sodium, vitamin D and others as examples of where misinterpretation and misunderstanding can happen. Show notes can be found at sigmanutrition.com/episode417/
12/14/20211 hour, 3 minutes, 25 seconds
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#416: David Nunan, PhD – Evidence-Informed Health Care: Evidence-based Medicine 2.0

Dr. David Nunan, PhD is a Lecturer and Senior Research Fellow in the Centre for Evidence-Based Medicine at the University of Oxford. There, he is the Director of the Postgraduate Certificate in 'Teaching Evidence-Based Health Care' and the lead tutor for the internationally-renowned 'Teaching Evidence-Based Medicine' course. He is a principal investigator with research interests in prevention and treatment of lifestyle-related conditions, improving the understanding and use of research evidence, and meta-epidemiology (research on research). David has experience in a breadth of methodologies including diagnostic studies, statistical analysis, qualitative research and clinical trials. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode416
12/7/202148 minutes, 40 seconds
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#415: Prof. Bruce Neal – Can Salt Substitutes Reduce Cardiac Events & Death?

Bruce Neal is Executive Director at The George Institute for Global Health Australia; and Professor of Medicine, UNSW Sydney. Prof Neal is a UK-trained physician who has 25 years’ experience in clinical, epidemiological, and public health research with a focus on heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Bruce has a longstanding interest in high blood pressure and diabetes and the potential for both clinical interventions and changes in the food supply to deliver health gains. His work has been characterised by its focus on collaboration, quantitation, translation and impact. He holds professorial appointments at UNSW Sydney, Imperial College London, and an honorary appointment at the University of Sydney. He has published some 450 scientific papers and since 2016 has been identified by Thomson Reuters as one of ‘The World’s Most Influential Scientific Minds’, an acknowledgement provided to just a few thousand researchers across all disciplines, worldwide. He has particular expertise in the conduct of large-scale clinical trials addressing cardiovascular disease but has also done a significant body of work addressing food policy issues related to sugars, fats, portion size and food labelling. Find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode415/
11/30/202146 minutes, 24 seconds
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#414: Will Machine Learning Overtake Traditional Nutrition Research Methods?

In this episode, the Sigma team discuss the claim that machine learning and data science may overtake traditional research methods in nutrition.  They discuss how machine learning could solve some current limitations of traditional methods, studies on its use so far, potential applications in future trials, and potential limitations or problems with the increased use of data science (including ethical and societal concerns). They also ponder on how tech is currently being used (and abused) in relation to personalised nutrition, tech products, continuous glucose monitoring use, among other things.
11/24/20211 hour, 43 minutes, 33 seconds
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#413: Anthony Fardet, PhD – Nutritional Reductionism, the Food Matrix & Impact of Processing

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Anthony Fardet, PhD is a nutrition science researcher in the Human Nutrition Unit at Université Clermont Auvergne, France. His work has focused on a number of related areas; the consequences of the reductionist and holistic approaches applied to nutrition research, the relevance of a new classification of foods based on their degree of processing, and the role of the complex structure of the food in its health potential ("matrix effect"). You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode413/
11/16/202154 minutes, 20 seconds
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#412: Eirini Dimidi, PhD – Diet, Chronic Constipation and the Gut

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Dr. Eirini Dimidi of King’s College London discusses the research on diet in chronic constipation and functional bowel disorders. Dr. Dimidi is a Lecturer in Nutritional Sciences and a Registered Dietitian. In 2016, she was appointed as a Research Associate at King’s College London, where she undertook several research projects on the impact of nutritional interventions in gut function and dysfunction. " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Dr. Dimidi is undertaking research on nutrition-based interventions, including fibre, plant foods, prebiotics, probiotics, and the low FODMAP diet, in gastrointestinal health. Her primary focus is to advance the understanding of the impact of dietary therapies in functional bowel disorders, including chronic constipation and irritable bowel syndrome.   " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode412/
11/9/202147 minutes, 50 seconds
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#411: Bone Health & Nutrition

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium In this episode Alan and Danny discuss the role of nutrition in bone health. They cover the importance of bone health, bone disorders such as osteoporosis, how nutrients play a role in bone remodelling, and the evidence of dietary and supplementation trials on bone health outcomes. You can find the show notes, with links to all the reference studies, at https://sigmanutrition.com/episode411/  Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
11/2/20211 hour, 29 minutes, 42 seconds
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#410: Q&A: Sodium, Protein, Quackery Tactics & More!

In this episode Alan and Danny answer a variety of questions sent in from listeners. Questions: [1:10] Gabriel - Is there any benefit to including SFAs and cholesterol in low quantities in our diets for healthspan? [10:42] Luis Arrondo - Can I do 3 rather than 4 meals or more for protein absorption by increasing grams of protein? How many grams of protein can be absorbed at one sitting. Does taking in protein at night help more absorption of protein? If so, something slower, like milk over whey? Last, how much protein per kilo of weight to gain muscle via weightlifing? [19:34] Heather Smith - Please could you go into the sodium needs of those with hypotension. Your podcast about normotension and hypertension was excellent, as was the section relating to athletes. I’d love to hear your thoughts on the sodium needs of a hypotensive person. Thank you! [27:00] Judith Williams - I would find it really helpful if you could summarise what the evidence shows are the key dietary changes for long term weight loss. [36:41] Dale Grant - Great podcast and episode as normal especially the quack asylum (big fan of this segment). Having listened to a few of these extreme people (quacks) on various platforms, I’ve noticed they also employ an aggressive falsify my opponents position tactic. Its almost as if they are aware of Karl Poppers falsification principle, but have misinterpreted it as falsify my "opponents" position instead of my own. Aside from the fact they falsely view the person they are having a debate with as their “opponent”, they miss the point that they should be trying to find evidence to falsify their own position, and thus get closer to a capital T Truth. On the other hand as Alan pointed out with Assem Mahlhotra, this may just be a reluctance to acknowledge evidence for other reasons (narcissism, us vs Them narrative, etc). Nowhere was this more apparent than when James Wilks (host of mass propaganda film game changers), sought to aggressively debate Chris Kresser on the Joe Rogan Podcast. Considering Wilks is a former cage fighter this wasn’t surprising. Unfortunately, this aggressive tactic does lead some people to conclude that Wilks has “won” the argument, because he has “won” the debate. Similar to most modern debates, it seems like you don’t have to win the debate intellectually with reason. Instead you just have to make it seem as if your more competent than your opponent. Do you agree these extreme people employ this tactic? and how do you think we could improve “scientific” debates (note inverted commas) in the public domain in the future? [46:40] Dimitri - Should fruit consumption be moderated because of the sugar content? For example, a fig has 8g of sugar, can I eat 5-10 in one sitting or would that be detrimental to health? [51:26] Rebecca Toutant - What is the evidence / practice behind integrative and functional nutrition? [56:06] Duncan Clarke - This will be a strange question for you but I'll send it anyway. How could a cyclist specifically lose upper body muscle mass? For example a fit healthy athlete from another sport takes up cycling and they now have more arm/shoulder muscle than needed. The goal being to maximize the power to weight ratio for climbing. [60:15] Gabriel - Do you foresee any public health issues related to the increasing popularity of plant based diets, where less careful individuals may face issues consuming certain nutrients harder to get from a plant based diet, such as preformed Vitamin A, choline, iron, protein etc? [72:03] Ward Stanford - After re-listening to your podcast on weight maintenance over time I was wondering what information exists on the idea of establishing new body fat set points. It seems like merely existing at a lower bf% for a period of time may not be enough, but what are your thoughts on one's ability to truly create a lower set point where it becomes easier to maintain a lower body fat, and how long would you need to be at that lower bf% for it to become a "set point" Thank you!
10/26/20211 hour, 22 minutes, 3 seconds
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#409: Simon Hill – Shifting Towards a Healthier Diet

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid="425311536639447040">In this episode nutritionist Simon Hill discusses the barriers to eating a healthy diet, steps that can be taken to shift both individuals and the general population to a healthier dietary patten, and a number of other topics. Find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode409/ 
10/19/202154 minutes, 11 seconds
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#408: Mario Kratz, PhD – Is Eating Full-fat Dairy, Low-fat Dairy, or No Dairy Better for Cardiometabolic Health?

or you can support the show on " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Dr. Mario Kratz is a clinical researcher in the areas of nutrition, obesity, and cardiometabolic disease, with more than 20 years of experience running clinical studies in a variety of populations. He is a former research associate professor at the University of Washington in the departments of Medicine and Epidemiology. And is also formerly an Associate Professor at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center in Washington state. or you can support the show on " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">You can find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode408/ or you can support the show on patreon.com/sigmanutrition/
10/12/20211 hour, 11 minutes, 39 seconds
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#407: Polyphenols - Impact on Blood Pressure, Endothelial Function & Heart Disease Risk

In this episode we discuss the potential impact of dietary polyphenols on cardiovascular disease risk; including impacts on blood pressure, flow-mediated dilation, and other related outcomes. We talk about some potential mechanisms and then several specific randomized, controlled trials. You can find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode407/ and you can support the podcast on patreon.com/sigmanutrition
10/5/202152 minutes, 47 seconds
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#406: Polyphenols & Cognitive Health

In this episode we discuss the potential impact of dietary polyphenols on cognitive health; including cogitnitve funciton, memory, and risk of dementia and Alzeimher's. We talk about some potential mechanisms, cohort studies, and then direct controlled trials. You can find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode406/ and/or support the podcast at patreon.com/sigmanutrition
9/28/20211 hour, 30 minutes, 7 seconds
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#405: Adrian Brown, PhD - Dietary Strategies in Type 2 Diabetes

and you can support the podcast at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid="425311536639447040">Dr Adrian Brown is a NIHR Lecturer and Research Fellow in the Centre of Obesity Research at University College London. He is also a senior Specialist Weight Management and Bariatric dietitian with over 15 years of clinical experience and a PhD in Medicine from Imperial College London. and you can support the podcast at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">His research interests centre around obesity, type 2 diabetes, bariatric surgery, weight stigma and the use of formula-based diets in different patient populations. He is an Honorary Academic for Public Health England Obesity and Healthy Weight Team, on the strategic council for APPG on Obesity and is on the scientific council of the British Nutrition Foundation.   and you can support the podcast at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode404/ and you can support the podcast at patreon.com/sigmanutrition/
9/21/20211 hour, 3 minutes, 9 seconds
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#404: Prof. Marion Hetherington – Psychology and Development of Food Preference & Eating Behaviour

and you can support the podcast at " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Prof. Marion Hetherington is Professor of Biopsychology at University of Leeds, where her research is focused on the psychology of appetite across the lifespan. She has previously been at Johns Hopkins, the NIH, the University of Dundee, University of Liverpool and Glasgow Caledonian University, before taking up her role in Leeds in 2008, where she works within the Human Appetite Research Unit. You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode404/ and you can support the podcast at patreon.com/sigmanutrition
9/14/202146 minutes, 24 seconds
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#403 Prof. David Jacobs – Food Synergy & The Top-Down Approach to Nutrition Research

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Prof. David Jacobs, PhD is Professor of Public Health, in the Division of Epidemiology and Community Health, at the University of Minnesota. He has published highly inflential work in nutritional epidemiology and health epidemiolgy for decades. A number of his papers have brought up crucially important ideas about how to do good nutrition science. Specifically, he has talked about think of whole diet or foods as the exposure of interest, rather than individual nutrients. Essentially warning against the pitfalls of applying a biomedical lens to nutrition research. You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode403/
9/7/202153 minutes, 45 seconds
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#402: Prof. Leanne Redman – Pregnancy, Maternal Diet & Intergenerational Transmission of Obesity

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Prof. Leanne Redman is a Professor of Reproductive Endocrinology & Women’s Health, based at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. As the director of the Reproductive Endocrinology and Women’s Health Laboratory, she is focused on understanding the intergenerational transmission of obesity. She has published on maternal diet, preeclampsia, and gestational diabetes, amoung other issues. She and her colleagues are currently conducting a rigorous trial to determine the effects of a 6-month gestational intervention with calorie restriction and food provision to promote maternal weight maintenance and fat loss in 100 pregnant women with grades 2 and 3 obesity. " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Show notes are available at sigmanutrition.com/episode402/ " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">You can support the podcast at patreon.com/sigmanutrition/
8/31/202152 minutes, 52 seconds
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#401: Quack Asylum – Part 2: Greger, Berg & Saladino

We take a look at three more "quacks" who spread misinformation; Dr. Michael Greger (01:21), Eric Berg (36:26), and Dr. Paul Saladino (55:18). We give reference to some specific examples. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode401/ If you wish to support the podcast you can do so via patreon.com/sigmanutrition/
8/24/20211 hour, 34 minutes, 3 seconds
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#400: Quack Asylum – Part 1: Malhotra & DiNicolantonio

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium To celebrate our 400th episode, we take a look at two "quacks" who spread misinformation; Dr. Aseem Malhotra and Dr. James DiNicolantonio. We give reference to some specific examples. Show notes available at https://sigmanutrition.com/episode400/  Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
8/17/20211 hour, 29 minutes, 23 seconds
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#399: Prof. James Betts – Does Fasting Have Benefits Beyond Those Caused By Calorie Restriction?

James Betts is Professor of Metabolic Physiology at the University of Bath, where he is Co-Director of the Centre for Nutrition, Exercise & Metabolism. His research employs randomised controlled trials to study the effects of nutrition on metabolic regulation. His group recently published a trial aiming to separate out the effects of fasting from those of calorie restriction. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode399/
8/10/202145 minutes, 17 seconds
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#398: Carole Hooven, PhD – Testosterone: Behavioural Endocrinology & Sex Differences

Carole Hooven, PhD, is lecturer and codirector of undergraduate studies in the Department of Human Evolutionary Biology at Harvard University. She earned her PhD at Harvard, studying behavioral endocrinology and evolution of sex differences in humans (physiology, behavior and cognition). She has recently written a book on how testosterone influences behaviour and explains many sex differences. The book is titled 'T: The Story of Testosterone, the Hormone that Dominates and Divides Us'. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode398/
8/3/202146 minutes, 49 seconds
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#397: Dietary Nitrates & Nitrites

In this episode Danny & Alan discuss the impacts of nitrates and nitrites on health. They look at the beneficial impacts of dietary nitrate, as well as issues around nitrites in processed meat. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode397/
7/27/202158 minutes, 59 seconds
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#396: Leigh Frame, PhD – Nutrient Trials: RCT Design, Ethics and Placebo Groups

Dr. Leigh Frame, PhD is Director of Integrative Medicine at George Washington School of Medicine and Health Sciences in Washington DC. Dr. Frame received her PhD in Human Nutrition, as well as a Master of Health Science degree in Molecular Microbiology and Immunology, from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. In this episode we discuss a range of topics including: the role of placebo groups and the different types we see in nutrient supplementation trials, potential ethical issues, and the development of research ethics. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/epsiode396/
7/20/202135 minutes, 46 seconds
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#395: Prof. Carel le Roux – Current Thinking in Obesity Treatment

" data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Professor le Roux is an expert in metabolic medicine and is currently a Professor of Experimental Pathology, University College Dublin. He is recognised as a world leader in metabolism and obesity. " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Professor le Roux’s clinical focus is in the management of Type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes, obesity, cardiovascular risk and other metabolic disorders. Professor Carel le Roux has been published extensively and currently holds a number of editorial roles for journals in his field including, Clinical Obesity and Surgery for Obesity and Related Diseases. " data-userid="424351203778215936" data-orgid= "425311536639447040">Show notes are available at: sigmanutrition.com/episode395
7/14/202130 minutes, 47 seconds
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#394: Gar Benn – Nutrition Coaching Q&A

Gar Benn is the Head of Coaching at Sigma Nutrition, where he works with nutrition coaching clients and oversees the coaching services. He is the owner of CityGym Limerick, a powerlifting-centric gym in Ireland. And he is also the co-founder of the European Powerlifting Confernce and Titan Ireland. Gar is a qualifed nutrition coach and has completed courses in Motivational Interviewing and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode394/
7/9/202148 minutes, 31 seconds
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#393: Vitamin D: Does Supplementation Actually Improve Health?

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Vitamin D status is linked to a variety of health outcomes, and avoiding or correcting deficiency is important. However, does supplementing with vitamin D actually benefit most people? Is there evidence for supplementation improving health outcomes like mortality, cancer risk, depression or other outcomes? In this episode Danny and Alan look at intervention trials of vitamin D supplementation. Show notes available at: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode393/ Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium  
6/29/20211 hour, 22 minutes, 42 seconds
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#392: Clare Pettinger, PhD, RD – Environmentally Sustainable Diets & Food Access

Dr. Clare Pettinger is a Registered Dietitian, Public Health Nutritionist and experienced educator. Dr. Pettinger publishes research in the public health nutrition field, and lectures at the Universtity of Plymouth, UK.  Dr. Pettinger is actively engaged in community-focussed research around food systems, poverty and social justice. She is an enthusiastic 'sustainability advocate' involved in promoting environmentally sustainable diets for nutrition professionals and Allied Health Professioinals.  Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode392
6/22/202148 minutes, 16 seconds
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#391: Is There a Body Weight Set Point?: Models of Body Mass Regulation

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the three primary models used to explain body mass regulation: 1) Set Point Model, 2) Settling Point Model, 3) Dual Intervention Model. They discuss the role of feedback systems, environment, behaviour, as well as discussing both the "thrifty gene hypothesis" and John Speakman's "drifty gene hypothesis".
6/15/20211 hour, 5 minutes, 36 seconds
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#390: Gil Carvalho MD, PhD – Dairy, Olive Oil & Diet Debates: Understanding Evidence

Gil Carvalho, MD PhD is a medical doctor, research scientist, science communicator. Dr. Carvalho trained as a medical doctor in the University of Lisbon, in his native Portugal, and later obtained a PhD in Biology from Caltech (California Institute of Technology). He has published peer-reviewed medical research spanning the fields of genetics, molecular biology, nutrition, behaviour, aging and neuroscience.   In this episode we discuss: Dairy: is it over-emphasized in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans? Dairy tolerance Critical importance of substitution effects Differences between difference types of dairy on health Claims by some WFPB advocates that olive oil can negatively impact endothethial function Distinguishing between acute and chronic effects Gil's work with Antonio Damasio on feelings Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode190
6/9/202151 minutes, 29 seconds
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#389: Renee McGregor, RD – Why Are Athletes Under-Eating?

Renee McGregor is a leading sports dietitian, specialising in Eating Disorders, REDs, The Female Athlete, athlete health and performance. She is regularly asked to work directly with high performing and professional athletes that have developed a dysfunctional relationship with food that is impacting their performance, health and career. Her practice and knowledge is supported by extensive experience of working in both clinical and performance nutrition, including, Olympic, Paralympic and Commonwealth teams. She is the co-founder and director of #TRAINBRAVE a campaign raising the awareness of eating disorders in sport; providing resources and practical strategies to reduce the prevalence. She is on the REDS advisory board for BASES (The British Association of Sport and Exercise Science) and sits on the International Task Force for Orthorexia. Find the show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode389
6/4/202149 minutes, 46 seconds
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#388: Consequences of Weight Stigma and Weight Bias

Danny & Alan discuss the current evidence on the health consequences and societal consequences of weight stigma and weigh bias. This includes implicit bias, explicit bias, and internalization of bias. What evidence do we currently have? And what questions remain unanswered? Segments: Today's Topic in Focus [03:39] Listener Questions  [59:48] Quack Asylum [68:55] Random Recommendations [72:07] You can find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode388 If you wish to support the podcast you can do so on Patreon at patreon.com/sigmanutrition or directly via the site at sigmanutrition.com/donate
5/27/20211 hour, 16 minutes, 38 seconds
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#387: Shift Work and Health

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the relationship between shift work and health. Why does shift work have negative health impacts? How can one mitigate circadian misalignment? How does shift work impact nutrient metabolism? What nutrition, sleep and lifestyle strategies can help shift workers?  Show notes at: sigmanutrition.com/episode387
5/18/20211 hour, 12 minutes, 30 seconds
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#386: Deirdre Tobias, ScD – Study Design, Diet Collection Methods and Nutrition Epidemiology

Dr. Tobias is a nutrition and obesity epidemiologist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, MA. She received doctoral and postdoctoral training from the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health, Boston, MA, under mentor Dr. Frank B. Hu. Dr. Tobias is co-Instructor of Nutrition Epidemiology with Dr. Walter Willett and faculty member at the Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health. Her epidemiologic research focuses on identifying lifestyle risk factors and underlying mechanisms related to obesity and its major chronic diseases, including type 2 diabetes and cancer. Dr. Tobias is currently the Academic Editor for the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode386
5/12/202158 minutes, 45 seconds
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#385: Insulin Resistance & Diet

In this episode we explore the causes of insulin resistance, and the dietary modifications that may help those with insulin resistance. We discuss how insulin resistance is a complex metabolic disorder, that goes beyond one single pathway or cause. There is also a discussion on the mechanisms of insulin resistance pathogenesis. Specifically, we talk about the accumulation of ectopic fat. Ectopic fat is the storage of triglycerides in tissues other than fat tissue, such as the liver, skeletal muscle, heart, and pancreas. There is also an overview of the Twin-Cycle Hypothesis, which was discussed in more detail in a previous episode with Prof. Roy Taylor. In addition, we give special mention to liver fat accumulation and the relationship between insulin resistance and non-alcoholic fatty liver disease (NAFLD). Then various diet interventions are assessed for their potential usefulness to those with insulin resistnace. This includes different diet types (e.g. whole-food plant-based diet, low-carbohydrate ketogenic diet, etc.), role of macronutrients, pre-loading studies, and the role of meal timing and circadian effects. Find the show notes at https://sigmanutrition.com/episode385
5/4/20211 hour, 17 minutes, 27 seconds
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#384: Research Review: The Interference Effect & Concurrent Training

In this episode Greg Nuckols and Mike Zourdos breakdown two research papers related to the interference effect and concurrent training.  Greg and Mike (along with Eric Helms and Eric Trexler) produce the MASS research review, which breaks down the latest research studies relevant to those interested in strength training, strength sports, and bodybuilding.  From April 27th to May 4th you can get a significant discount on a MASS subscription by visiting sigmanutrition.com/mass-sale/
4/27/202144 minutes, 11 seconds
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#383: Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) & Diet

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss irritable bowel syndome and the evidence related to dietary interventions. They discuss diagnosis of the condition, various sub-types, potential mechanisms, the gut-brain axis, first line treatments, impact of fibre, and evidence on the low FODMAP diet. Today's Topic in Focus: IBS & Diet [06:20] "I Have a Question!" [74:47] Quack Asylum [79:30] Random Recommendations [86:49] Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode383
4/20/20211 hour, 33 minutes, 49 seconds
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#382: Andy Morgan – Practicalities of Body Composition Change

Andy Morgan is the founder of RippedBody.com and an online coach. He co-authored the Muscle & Strength Pyramids books along with Dr. Eric Helms and Andrea Valdez. He has published a host of excellent nutrition and training resources in the form of ebooks, articles and podcasts, which can be found on the Ripped Body website. He recently released the third edition of the Diet Adjustments Manual. You can find the show notes to this episode at: sigmanutrition.com/episode382
4/6/202150 minutes, 19 seconds
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#381: Prof. Chris Packard – LDL Cholesterol, ApoB & Atherosclerosis

Prof. Chris Packard holds an Honorary Professorship of Vascular Biochemistry at the University of Glasgow. Over his career, Professor Packard has focussed on two aspects of atherosclerosis research, lipoprotein metabolism and how it is affected by diets and drugs, and large-scale clinical trials of lipid lowering agents. He is acknowledged as one of the leading researchers in the world in this field. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode381
3/30/20211 hour, 14 minutes, 42 seconds
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#380: Prof. Barry Popkin – The Nutrition Transition & Using Policy Actions to Create Healthier Diets

Prof. Barry Popkin is the W.R. Kenan Jr. Distinguished Professor of Nutrition at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He is a nutrition and obesity researcher at the Carolina Population Center and is the director of the Interdisciplinary Center for Obesity at UNC. He developed the concept of the Nutrition Transition, the study of the dynamic shifts in dietary intake and physical activity patterns and trends around obesity and other nutrition-related noncommunicable diseases (NCD). Prof. Popkin is involved now in work on program and policy design at the national level to improve the average diet at the population level. He has published more than 545 journal articles, and is one of the most cited nutrition scholars in the world, with more than 90,000 citations. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode380
3/23/202148 minutes, 39 seconds
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#379: Obesity & Chronic Disease Risk with Dr. Spencer Nadolsky

Danny and Alan are joined by Dr. Spencer Nadolsky. Dr. Nadolsky is a board-certified obesity specialist, lipidologist, and family physician. In this episode we discuss the strengths and limitations of BMI, adipose tissue type and relevance to risk, hypertrophic vs. hyperplastic adipocytes, 'Metabolically Healthy Obesity', and weight stigma. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode379
3/16/20211 hour, 17 minutes, 34 seconds
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#378: Nutritional Epidemiology

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss some critical aspects to understand about nutritional epidemiology in order to evaluate diet-disease relationships appropriately. Of particular focus in this episode is the unique exposure of interest in nutrition studies, why its crucial to understand temporal relationships and how to think about relative risk and absolute risk. The guys finish by explaining how one can include these findings into an understanding of an overall body of evidence. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode378
3/9/20211 hour, 17 minutes, 29 seconds
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#377: Herman Pontzer, PhD – Metabolism, Mitochondria & Evolutionary Biology

Herman Pontzer, PhD is an Associate Professor of Evolutionary Anthropology at Duke University and Associate Research Professor of Global Health at the Duke Global Health Institute. He is an internationally recognized researcher in human energetics and evolution. Over two decades of research in the field and laboratory, Dr. Pontzer has conducted pathbreaking studies across a range of settings, including fieldwork with Hadza hunter-gatherers in northern Tanzania, fieldwork on chimpanzee ecology in the rainforests of Uganda, and metabolic measurements of great apes in zoos and sanctuaries around the globe. Find the show notes to this episode at sigmanutrition.com/episode377
3/2/202148 minutes, 49 seconds
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#376: Kevin Hall, PhD – Plant-based Diet vs. Ketogenic Diet: Impact on Calorie Intake

Dr. Kevin Hall, PhD is Senior Chief of the Integrative Physiology Section of the Laboratory of Biological Modeling at the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases (NIDDK). His laboratory investigates how metabolism and the brain adapt in response to a variety of interventions to diet and physical activity. They carry out studies to better understand the complex mechanisms regulating macronutrient metabolism, body composition, and energy expenditure. Recently Dr. Hall was lead author on a study titled 'Effect of a plant-based, low-fat diet versus an animal-based, ketogenic diet on ad libitum energy intake', which was published in Nature Medicine in early 2021. [Disclaimer: By participating in this podcast, the U.S. Government, represented by the National Institutes of Health does not directly or indirectly endorse any product or service provided, or to be provided, by Sigma Nutrition.] Link to show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode376
2/23/202151 minutes, 44 seconds
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#375: Salt, Sodium & Health

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the current evidence base related to sodium intake and health, most notably cardiovascular disease. The episode walks through understanding diet-disease relationships, the epidemiology of sodium and health outcomes, the reasons for conflicting conlusions, sodium measurements in research, intervention trials, and more. Importantly, the claim that the sodium-CVD risk relationship exhibits a "J-shaped curve" (i.e. risk is low at moderate intakes and higher at both low and high intakes) is dissected, with recommendations given on how to reconcile all the available evidence.
2/16/20211 hour, 43 minutes, 56 seconds
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#374: How to Plan a Fighter’s Diet

In this episode Danny becomes the interviewee, as he is interviewed by sports dietitian and owner of The Fight Dietitian, Jordan Sullivan RD. Jordan oversees the diet of several UFC athletes, including champions Israel Adesanya and Alexander Volkanovski. Danny and Jordan have an in-depth chat about all aspects of nutrition and weight cutting for combat sport athletes, including the concept of the "52 week fight camp" and Danny's five-phase model of combat sport nutrition. This discussion first appeared on the Fight Science Podcast. Thanks to Jordan Sullivan for allowing its reproduction here.   Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode374   Weight Cutting System: sigmanutrition.com/weightcut
2/9/20211 hour, 39 minutes, 55 seconds
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#373: Alcohol & Health: Is Zero Better Than Some?

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the health impacts of alcohol and take a look at the research to answer whether alcohol should be viewed as having a J-shaped curve of risk or zero alcohol being better than any amount. Segments: [03:40] Today's Topic in Focus [53:45] "I Have a Question!" [62:14 ]Random Recommendations Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode373
2/2/20211 hour, 5 minutes, 54 seconds
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#372: Mike Israetel, PhD – Bodybuilding, Avoiding Suffering & Lessons for Life

Dr. Mike Israetel​ is the cofounder of Renaissance Periodization, where he produces content related to training and dieting for hypertrophy, strength and bodybuidling. Dr. Israetel is also currently a professor in the strength and hypertrophy masters program at Lehman College. Mike is himself a competitive bodybuilder and professional Brazilian Jiu Jitsu grappler. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode372
1/26/202153 minutes, 14 seconds
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#371: Dietary Cholesterol – Are Eggs & Cholesterol-rich Foods a Cause for Concern?

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the debate over the impact of dietary cholesterol on LDL-C levels and heart disease risk. Are eggs & cholesterol-rich foods a problem? Let's dive into the research to find out!    Today's Topic in Focus:  [00:51]    "I Have a Question!"  [62:32]    Quack Asylum [72:55]    Random Recommendations [75:28]    Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode371
1/19/20211 hour, 24 minutes, 10 seconds
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#370: Jake Mey, PhD, RD - Dietetics, Evidence-based Practice & Translating Science into Advice

Dr. Jake Mey is a registered dietitan and a human nutrition researcher. He is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. His work focuses on diet, muscle & metabolism. Dr. Mey has a PhD in human nutrition and kinesology. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode370
1/13/202141 minutes, 59 seconds
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#369: Prof. Jason Gill - Population Cardiometabolic Disease Risk: Impact of Strength, Fitness & Activity

Professor Jason Gill is a Professor of Cardiometabolic Health in the Institute of Cardiovascular and Medical Sciences at the University of Glasgow. He leads an active multi-disciplinary research group investigating the effects of exercise and diet on the prevention and management of vascular and metabolic diseases from the molecular to the whole-body level.   He is a past Chair of the British Association of Sport and Exercise Sciences (BASES) Division of Physical Activity for Health and a member of the development groups for the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) guidelines for the prevention and treatment of obesity and for prevention of cardiovascular disease.   In this episode we discuss: Strength and chronic disease risk Discrepancy between self-report and objective measurements of physical activity Regression dilution bias: If you measure something poorly you diminish the apparent association with the outcome The EuroFIT randomized controlled trial The amount of exercise needed to get to a point of low absolute risk of cardiometabolic disease is more for high-risk populations vs. low-risk populations Why if you have a higher genetic risk for obesity, then lifestyle matters more, not less Should there be differential guidelines for activity based on race/ethnicity? Interaction between degree of social deprivation, lifestyle and health outcomes Why reducing sitting time may not be a useful target   LINK: sigmanutrition.com/episode369
1/6/202158 minutes, 8 seconds
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#368: Shannon Beer – Intentional Eating, Flourishing Health & Behavioural Psychology

Shannon Beer is a nutritionist, working with people via online coaching and mentoring, with the goal of helping people improve their health through facilitating lasting behaviour change. In collaboration with Dr. Gabrielle Fundaro, she has developed a coaching framework that applies motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral coaching, and acceptance and commitment therapy-aligned processes in a client-centered alliance toward their own values-based goals. This 'Comprehensive Coaching' model facilitates long-term behavior change and flourishing health in clients. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode368
1/1/202159 minutes, 17 seconds
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#367: Gabrielle Fundaro, PhD – Mindful Eating, Facilitating Health Behaviour Change & Client-centred Coaching

Dr. Gabrielle Fundaro is a nutrition/health coach who focuses on facilitating behavior change, embodying a positive relationship with food, cultivating positive body image, and improving sport performance.    Dr. Fundaro is a former Assistant Professor of Exercise Science at Georgia Gwinnett College and holds a PhD in Human Nutrition and Exercise. She is currently a board member of both the Nutrition Coaching Global Mastermind (NCGM) and the Sports Nutrition Association (SNA).    In collaboration with Shannon Beer, she has developed a coaching framework that applies motivational interviewing, cognitive behavioral coaching, and acceptance and commitment therapy-aligned processes in a client-centered alliance toward their own values-based goals. This 'Comprehensive Coaching' model facilitates long-term behavior change and flourishing health in clients.    LINK: sigmanutrition.com/episode367
12/28/202052 minutes, 8 seconds
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#366: Listener Q&A

In this episode Danny and Alan answer some listener questions, covering a range of topics, including hunger cues, weight-neutral appraoches, body fat distribution, and breakfast and cognition, among others. The guys also discuss the most interesting thing they've learned this year and resources on critical thinking. Questions Answered: [08:40] What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learnt this year?   [16:30] Is the cliche “hacks to survive the holiday period” a damaging narrative?   [18:32] Is the notion that weight loss attempts typically produce more harm than benefit, evidence-based?   [21:28] What's your opinion on intuitive eating? Both the official book and the unofficial trend.   [25:40] Based on your previous podcast discussing health policy, how does a health coach use this knowledge working with clients given that the deck may be stacked against certain clients? Does HAES become more important for clients who face more challenges like those you spoke about?   [30:26] What are the things a person can read or learn outside nutrition to become a better thinker and person?   [39:35] Is there a benefit to eating breakfast in the morning for mental/cognitive purposes?   [45:51] Genetically, do different individuals respond differently to various hunger cues? i.e; some respond extremely well to the secretion of leptin, and other to the stretch receptors in the stomach?   [50:15] Nightshift workers: to eat or not eat between midnight and 6am. What’s best to snack on P, C, or F?   [56:09] When it comes to the frontiers of nutrition science (nutrigenomics, diet-microbiome, etc.), which show most promise and which are overhyped?   [62:12] What is actually worse when it comes to a fatty liver, fructose or saturated fat?   [65:42] What makes collagen supplements any better/any different than simple AA supplements? Is it just marketing?   [69:42] Is fish oil supplementation worth the hype? Or is it better to get your omega 3 fatty acids from natural sources like fish?   [80:17] I've heard that peri/post-menopausal women's bodies are less efficient at using carbohydrates as fuel due to the hormonal changes. Is there any evidence to back up this claim?   [83:21] Thoughts on post-menopause midriff fat gain due to fat cells secreting oestrogen?   [85:26] Is there any evidence supporting strategies at target fat cells with a high ratio of alpha:beta receptors (i.e., "stubborn" fat)?   [88:50] Do we eat to feed ourselves or are we just the vehicle to feed the many bacteria in/on us?   [92:12] Is arteriosclerosis reversible?   [94:02] In the paleo/keto community there is a lot of discussion about the pro-inflammatory nature of industrialised seed and vegetable oils. Does the science back avoiding these?   [96:28] If marine omega 3 is so important, then how do we reconcile the fact that historically many cultures wouldn't have had much access to them?   [99:34] Do statins adversely affect strength gains or hypertrophy?   Find all mentioned resources linked at the show notes page: sigmanutrition.com/episode366
12/22/20201 hour, 42 minutes, 18 seconds
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#365: David Robert Grimes, PhD – Conspiracy Theories & Bad Information: Why Are We Susceptible?

Dr. David Robert Grimes is a physicist, cancer researcher and a science journalist. In addition to his cancer research, he has also published peer-reviewed work on conspiracy theories, meta-research and health modelling. Dr. Grimes is the author of the fantastic book The Irrational Ape: Why We Fall for Disinformation, Conspiracy Theory and Propaganda. And given his keen interest in advancing the public understanding of science, he contributes to several media outlets discussing science, politics and society. He appears frequently on news media to discuss and debate topics as diverse as vaccination to climate-change, and gives talks across the world on the importance of evidence in society. He was joint winner of the 2014 Nature / Sense About Science Maddox Prize for standing up for Science. David is affiliated with Oxford University, Queen's University Belfast and Dublin City University. His cancer research has focused on the mathematical modelling and mechanistic understanding of hypoxia in cancer. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode365
12/15/20201 hour, 11 minutes, 18 seconds
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#364: Jake Linardon, PhD - Disordered Eating: Impact of Macro Tracking & Social Media

Dr. Jake Linardon is a Senior Research Fellow at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia. His research focuses on eating disorders, with a primary focus on testing and evaluating a broad range of treatment approaches for eating disorders. Dr. Linardon is particularly interested in understanding how modern information technology can be used to help those most in need. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode364
12/8/20201 hour, 5 minutes, 14 seconds
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#363: Public Health Policy vs. Personal Responsibility: Evidence vs. Ideology

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the evidence for public health nutrition interventions, how health inequalities are driven by socioeconomic factors, and how ideology and simplistic rhetoric about "personal responsibility" can get in the way. Today's Topic in Focus [07:29] "I Have a Question!"  [82:22] Quack Asylum [85:20] Random Recommendations [91:14] Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode363
12/1/20201 hour, 39 minutes, 39 seconds
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#362: Alistair Monteyne – Impact of Mycoprotein & Vegan Diets on Muscle Protein Synthesis

Alistair Monteyne is the lead author on some recent RCTs examining the impact of mycoprotein on muscle protein synthesis. Alistair is currently a PhD student in the Nutritional Physiology Research Group based at the University of Exeter in the UK. He also has a MSc. in Sport and Exercise Nutrition from Loughborough University.    Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode362
11/25/202037 minutes, 10 seconds
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#361: Sarah Berry, PhD – The PREDICT Study, Postprandial Metabolism & Personalised Nutrition

Dr Sarah Berry is a researcher and senior lecturer in nutritional science at King's College London. Her research interests relate to the influence of dietary components on markers of cardiovascular disease risk; with a particular focus on the influence of food and fat structure on postprandial metabolism. Dr. Berry has been the academic leader for more than 30 human nutrition studies in cardio-metabolic health. Her research also focuses on the influence of manipulation of food structure and subsequent effects on lipid and carbohydrate bioaccessibility and changes in postprandial metabolism. Sarah is also the lead nutritional scientist on an ongoing series of postprandial metabolic studies, assessing the genetic, metabolic, metagenomic, and meal-dependent effects on postprandial metabolic responses in >1,200 individuals in the UK and US. Show notes available at sigmanutrition.com/episode361
11/18/202058 minutes, 49 seconds
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#360: Nick Hiebert – Micronutrients, Anti-nutrients and Non-essential Nutrients

Nick Hiebert writes about nutrition science on his site The Nutrivore, as well as exclusive, comprehnsive posts on his Patreon page. He is the creator of the "Nutrient Density Cheat Sheet", a nutrition ranking tool for hundreds of whole foods.  Nick has a deep interest in a host of nutrition science topics, from nutrient density to saturated fat & cardiovascular disease. He does a lot of deep analysis of raw data and has published some independent meta-analyses on his site.  Show notes can be found at sigmanutrition.com/episode360
11/12/202050 minutes, 51 seconds
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#359: Calorie Confusion - (Mis)Understanding Energy Balance

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the common misunderstandings and misrepresentations of the energy balance equation, leading to problematic debates over the validity of 'calories in, calories out'.   Today's Topic in Focus: Calories In, Calories Out [02:15]    "I Have a Question!" [60:17]    Quack Asylum [70:20]    Random Recommendations [76:20]    SHOW NOTES: sigmanutrition.com/episode359
11/5/20201 hour, 21 minutes, 43 seconds
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#358: Coffee & Health

In this episode Danny and Alan discuss the health impacts of coffee consumption, including long-term protective influence on disease risk, acute impacts, optimal dosages, genetic differences in metabolism and the influence of the bioactive compounds in coffee. Today's Topic in Focus: [01:50] "I Have a Question!" [68:18] Quack Asylum [71:03] Random Recommendations [81:50] Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode358
10/27/20201 hour, 25 minutes, 48 seconds
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#357: Nicky Keay, MB BChir – Female Athletes: Hormones, Energy Availability & the Menstrual Cycle

Dr. Nicky Keay is a medical doctor (MB BChir, MRCP) with specific training in endocrinology. She has published related to female athlete hormone profiling, energy availability, and relative energy deficiency in sport (RED-S). As a Research Fellow at St Thomas’ Hospital, she was part of the international medical team which developed an anti-doping test for growth hormone. Dr. Keay studied medicine at Cambridge University, gained membership of the Royal College of Physicians, and trained in endocrinology. Dr. Keay is currently an Honoray Fellow at Durham Universty in the Department of Sport and Exercise Sciences. Show notes at sigmanutrition.com/episode357
10/21/202056 minutes, 29 seconds
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#356: Hana Kahleova, MD, PhD – Plant-based Diets, Meal Timing & Meal Frequency

Dr. Hana Kahleova is the director of clinical research at the Physicians Committee and directs research testing the effect a plant-based diet has on metabolism, insulin function, fitness, and mental health, as well as studying the impact meal timing and meal frequency have on metabolism and body weight.  Dr. Kahleova earned her doctorate in nutrition and diabetes and her medical degree from Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic. As a postdoctoral research fellow at Loma Linda University in California, Dr. Kahleova analyzed data from 50,000 Adventist Health Study-2 participants. She analyzed data on meal frequency and timing in relationship to changes in body weight.  Show notes at: sigmanutrition.com/episode356
10/15/202042 minutes, 53 seconds
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#355: Is Time-restricted Eating Dead?: A Closer Look

Danny & Alan discuss a recent paper on time-restricted eating that has been inaccurately interpreted by some as a "disproval" of TRE as an intervention. In this episode, the aim is to provide some context to the situation. There are also three listener questions, and another person/claim is brought into the quack asylum! Today's Topic in Focus: Time-Restricted Eating [05:14] "I Have a Question!" [57:27] Quack Asylum [73:35] Random Recommendations [86:05] SHOW NOTES: sigmanutrition.com/episode355
10/9/20201 hour, 32 minutes, 16 seconds
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#354: Problems with the Meta-Analysis in Nutrition

Danny & Alan discuss issues with using and interpreting meta-analyses in nutritional science, they answer a question about methods of reheating food, and they highlight a recent paper published by quacks that experts have termed a "deception". Today's Topic in Focus [08:50] "I Have a Question!" [53:35] Quack Asylum [59:32] Something Random [66:42] Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode354
9/29/20201 hour, 12 minutes, 38 seconds
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#353: James Hébert, ScD – Dietary Inflammatory Index

Dr. James Hébert is a nutritional and cancer epidemiologist, currently a distinguished Professor at the University of South Carolina. Dr. Hébert’s professional focus for the past several years has been on developing and refining the Dietary Inflammatory Index™ (DII®), which has now been established as an effective research tool. Dr. Hébert is also a Professor in the Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, a Professor of Epidemiology at the Medical University of South Carolina, a Professor of Community Medicine and Epidemiology at the University of South Carolina, School of Medicine, and the Director of the Cancer Prevention and Control Program. Dr. Hébert obtained his ScD (Doctor of Science) in nutritional epidemiology from Harvard University in 1984. Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode353
9/22/202049 minutes, 18 seconds
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#352: Do Diets Even Work in the Long-term? - A Look at Weight Loss Maintenance

Danny and Alan take a look at the evidence on weight loss maintenance, answer a question about ApoE4, and admit another nonsensical claim into the quack asylum. In this episode: [02:56] Today's Topic in Focus: Weight Regain vs Weight Loss Maintenance [58:56] I Have a Question!: "How does the ApoE4 allele affect lipid metabolism? And how should someone structure their diet around having one or both alleles due to it resulting in higher LDL-C than someone without the gene?" [63:09] Quack Asylum: Irish doctors gives nonsensical and harmful nutrition recommendations. [76:35] Random Recommendations Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode352
9/15/20201 hour, 22 minutes, 34 seconds
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#351: Prof. Glenn Gibson - Human Gut Bacteriology, Prebiotics & Probiotics

Glenn Gibson is Professor of Food Microbiology at University of Reading. He has been researching bacteria in the gut for over 30 years. Together with his colleague Marcel B. Roberfroid, both researchers coined the term prebiotics in their 1995 paper. He has published over 450 research papers and 8 books. He currently researches acute and chronic gut disease, with specific projects on probiotics and prebiotics, gas production, gut microbiota development, gastroenteritis, obsesity and colonic homeostasis. Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode351
9/8/202052 minutes, 51 seconds
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#350: Peter Olusoga, PhD & Hugh Gilmore – Coaching Burnout: The Research & Applied Psychology

Dr Peter Olusoga is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology at Sheffield Hallam University. His current research focuses on stress, burnout and wellbeing in sports, with a particular interest in high-performance environments and elite coaching. Peter is a Chartered Psychologist with the British Psychological Society (BPS). Hugh Gilmore is an accredited sport psychologist with experience working in elite sport in the UK. Hugh has worked with elite athletes across a number of sports, including with the British Weightlifting team in the lead-up to the Olympic Games. Hugh has a MSc. in Applied Sport and Exercise Psychology. And is accredited by The Irish Institute of Sport and the British Association of Sport and Exercise Science (BASES). Peter and Hugh are the hosts of the new sport psychology podcast Eighty Percent Mental. Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode350
9/2/20201 hour, 2 minutes, 12 seconds
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#349: Prof. Naomi Allen – How the UK Biobank is Powering Chronic Disease Research

Professor Naomi Allen was appointed Chief Scientist for UK Biobank in 2019, having joined UK Biobank in November 2011 as Senior Epidemiologist. She is Professor of Epidemiology at the Nuffield Department of Population Health, University of Oxford, with a keen research interest in cancer epidemiology. At UK Biobank she is responsible for following-up participants both through linkage with routine health-related datasets, and through web-based questionnaires. She is also involved in developing the scientific strategy for future enhancements for the study. Her research interest is largely in the role of diet, obesity and circulating biomarkers in cancer development. Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode349
8/26/202046 minutes, 40 seconds
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#348: Omega-3 Supplementation & Heart Disease

Today's Topic in Focus: Omega-3 Supplementation & Heart Disease [01:52]  "I Have a Question!" [66:30]: UK government obesity plan.  Quack Asylum [87:00]: Is a gram of PUFA in chicken worse than 250g of sugar from honey? Carnivore cannibalism!  Random Recommendations [94:20]  SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode348/
8/19/20201 hour, 39 minutes, 38 seconds
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#347: Alex Thomas - Advancing the Sports Nutritionist Profession

Alex Thomas is the founder of Sports Nutrition Association (SNA), which is global association that contains Sports Nutrition Australia, Sports Nutrition NewZealand, Sports Nutrition Asia, and Sports Nutrition USA. Alex is an experienced Clinical Accredited Sports Nutritionist. He is the Australasian Ambassador of the ISSN (International Society of Sports Nutrition). He is co-creator of the Metabolic Health Screen (A health risk and contraindication identification and triage system – now imbedded in the MyPocketcoach platform). His passion is in providing legitimate education, qualifications and insurance pathways to ensure the successful and sustainable career pathways for the profession of Sports Nutritionists. Alex believes we now have a unique opportunity to establish a significant meaningful impact and pride in what it is to hold the title of ‘Accredited Sports Nutritionist’ within the industry. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode347
8/12/202043 minutes, 41 seconds
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#346: Kathryn Bradbury, PhD – Diet & Colorectal Cancer Risk

Dr. Kathryn Bradbury, PhD is a researcher at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. Her research has focused on examining the role of diet in the development of cancer, cardiovascular disease and other non-communicable diseases. Dr. Bradbury spent 5 years in the Cancer Epidemiology Unit at the University of Oxford. There, she worked as a nutritional epidemiologist on large cohort studies, including the European Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), and the UK Biobank. She also has expertise in traditional and web-based dietary assessment methods, nutritional epidmiology (including prospective analyses of large cohort studies), biomarkers of nutritional status (including folate), blood lipids, the role of diet in the development of gastrointestinal cancers, and vegetarian nutrition. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode346
8/4/202040 minutes, 15 seconds
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#345: Rebecca Leech, PhD – Impact of Meal Patterning on Diet Quality & Health

Dr. Rebecca Leech is a Registered Nutritionist and Nutritional Epidemiologist, based at Deakin’s Institute for Physical Activity and Nutrition. Rebecca has a PhD in Nutritional Epidemiology, and in 2018, was awarded an Alfred Deakin Medal for her doctoral thesis, which examined adults’ eating patterns and their associations with diet quality and obesity. Her postdoctoral research, extends on this, and applies novel analytic approaches to understand determinants of food intake at eating occasions and the role of eating patterns in cardiometabolic health in adults. Dr. Leech is funded by an Alfred Deakin Postdoctoral Fellowship and received category 1 funding from the National Heart Foundation (NHF) Postdoctoral Fellowship in 2019. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode345/
7/29/202046 minutes, 23 seconds
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#344: Prof. Martin Caraher – Food Poverty & Food Aid Provision

Prof. Martin Caraher is Emeritus Professor of food and health policy at Centre for Food Policy at City, University of London. He has worked for and acted as a consultant to the UK Department of Health, the World Bank and the World Health Organisation. He was a member of the original London Food Board which developed the food strategy for London. He is a member of the International Obesity Task Force (IOTF) scientific committee. He also sits on the Safefood Irl scientific committee. Show Notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode344
7/22/20201 hour, 5 minutes, 8 seconds
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#343: Understanding Causality in Nutrition Science

Danny & Alan discuss how to understand causality in nutrition research. The episodes includes: inferring causality vs demonstrating causality, the hierarchy of evidence vs. standards of proof,  the erroneous application of the biomedical model to nutrition, RCTs vs. epidemiology, what the “highest quality evidence available” is, and how nutritional epidemiology can infer causality. Episode also includes a listener question, random recommendations and the Quack Asylum! Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode343
7/16/20201 hour, 31 minutes, 59 seconds
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#342: Are Vegan Diets Superior for Health?

In this episode Alan and Danny discuss the nutritional science research on vegan diets and human health. Some of the concepts covered include: defining “plant-based” diets, examination of various intervention trials comparing diets, veganism across the lifestage, benefits of a vegan diet, nutrient considerations and lots more. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode342
7/7/20201 hour, 43 minutes, 8 seconds
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#340: Ethics of Veganism & Omnivorism (Part 4) – Diana Rodgers, RD & Robb Wolf

Diana Rodgers and Robb Wolf are the co-authors of Sacred Cow, a book exploring the important role of animals in our food system. Diana is a Registered Dietitian living on a working organic farm in New England, where she runs an active nutrition practice. She speaks at universities and conferences internationally about nutrition and sustainability, social justice, animal welfare and food policy issues. She’s just completed work on the new book and film project, Sacred Cow. Robb Wolf is a former research biochemist and a New York Times/WSJ Best Selling author (for both The Paleo Solution and Wired To Eat). Robb has functioned as a review editor for the Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism (Biomed Central) and as a consultant for the Naval Special Warfare Resiliency program. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode340/
7/1/202055 minutes, 58 seconds
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#339: Prof. Corinna Hawkes - Food Policy, Food Systems & Public Health

Professor Corinna Hawkes has been working for the past 20 years with UN agencies, governments, NGOs and academia at the local, national and international level to support the design of more effective policies throughout the food system to improve diets and prevent malnutrition in all its forms. She is currently Director of the Centre for Food Policy at City, University of London, UK, a Centre dedicated to shaping a more effective food system through education, research and engagement with the world of food policy. In 2018 she was appointed Vice Chair of the London Child Obesity Taskforce by the Mayor of London. She was a member of the EAT-Lancet Commission on Healthy Diets from Sustainable Food Systems and the Lancet Commission on Obesity. Corinna has worked at the World Health Organization, the International Food Policy Research Institute, the University of Sao Paulo and as Head of Policy and Public Affairs at World Cancer Research Fund International, where she established the NOURISHING Framework which tracks policies to promote healthy eating worldwide. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode339
6/26/202052 minutes, 33 seconds
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#338: Ethics of Veganism & Omnivorism (Part 3) - Alex O' Connor

Alex J. O’Connor is founder of the Cosmic Skeptic YouTube channel, podcast and blog; platforms dedicated to the publication of philosophical ideas and debates in an accessible format. He is currently reading for a degree in philosophy and theology at St John’s College, Oxford University. Alex is an impassioned animal rights advocate and religious critic, regularly discussing these topics on his online platforms. He has spoken at conferences internationally and has engaged in debates on ethics and philosophy. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode338/
6/21/202051 minutes, 21 seconds
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#337: Ethics of Veganism & Omnivorism (Part 2) – Prof. Paul Thompson

Professor Paul B. Thompson holds the W.K. Kellogg Chair in Agricultural, Food and Community Ethics at Michigan State University, where he serves on the faculty in the departments of Philosophy, Community Sustainability and Agricultural, Food and Resource Economics. He received his Ph.D. in Philosophy from the State University of New York at Stony Brook and has held posts at Texas A&M University and Purdue University. Thompson’s research and teaching has focused on ethical and philosophical topics in food and agriculture. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode337
6/16/202033 minutes, 16 seconds
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#336: Ethics of Veganism & Omnivorism (Part 1) – Andrew Chignell, PhD

Andrew Chignell is a professor at Princeton, with appointments in Religion, Philosophy, and the University Center for Human Values. He was previously an associate professor at Cornell and a professor at University of Pennsylvania. He received his PhD from Yale. Chignell’s work to date focuses on Immanuel Kant and other modern European philosophers, philosophy of religion, the moral psychology of hope and despair, and the ethics of belief. He also has an interest in food ethics, and recently co-produced (with Will Starr at Cornell) a Massive Open Online Course on “The Ethics of Eating” for EdX.org.
6/10/202049 minutes, 54 seconds
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#335: Kyra Bobinet, MD – Systems, Dietary Behaviour Change & the Iterative Mindset

Dr. Bobinet received her Masters in Public Health at Harvard University, specializing in Healthcare Management, Technology-enabled Behavior Change, and Population Health Management. She received her medical degree from the UCSF School of Medicine. She has also studied in Dr. BJ Fogg’s Persuasive Tech Lab at Stanford. Kyra has founded several healthcare start-ups, spanning behavior health, population health, and mobile health. She has designed behavior change programs, big data algorithms, billion dollar products, mobile health apps, and evidence-based studies in metabolic medicine. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode335 Get 20% off at Legion Athletics using the code SIGMA: buylegion.com/sigma
6/4/202041 minutes, 42 seconds
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#334: Austin Baraki, MD – Potential Harms of Screening, Overdiagnosis and Overtreatment

Dr. Austin Baraki, MD is an Internal Medicine Physician, based in San Antonio, Texas. He completed his doctorate in medicine at Eastern Virginia Medical School, and Internal Medicine Residency at the University of Texas Health Science Center in San Antonio. He also works as a strength coach and puts out information via Barbell Medicine. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode334
5/28/20201 hour, 28 minutes, 22 seconds
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#333: Diet & Immunity

Today's Topic in Focus: Immune Function & Diet Innate and adaptive immune response How does body composition impact immune function? Will a calorie deficit or fasting decrease immunity? Vitamins A, C, D. Supplementation with zinc: yes or no? Eating “to support the immune system” Exercise and immunity Environmental factors in infancy Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode333
5/20/20201 hour, 28 minutes, 24 seconds
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#332: Prof. Sam McConkey – COVID-19: Public Health Response, Clinical Presentation & Socioeconomics

Prof. Sam McConkey is a doctor and researcher specializing in the prevention and control of infectious diseases. Currently he is Associate Professor and Head of the Department of International Health and Tropical Medicine at the Royal College of Surgeons in Ireland. He is also a Consultant in General Medicine, Tropical Medicine and Infectious Diseases at Beaumont Hospital Dublin. Previously Prof. McConkey was a Research Fellow in Infectious Disease at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis, Missouri and an Honorary Consultant in Infectious Diseases at Oxford Radcliffe Trust. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode332/
5/15/202055 minutes, 43 seconds
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#331: Prof. Roy Taylor – Diabetes Remission, Very-low Calorie Diets & the Twin Cycle Hypothesis

Roy Taylor is Professor of Medicine and Metabolism at the University of Newcastle in the UK. There he is also director of the Newcastle Magnetic Resonance Centre. Prof. Taylor is an Honorary Consultant Physician at Newcastle Acute Hospitals NHS Trust. Since publishing his "twin cycle" hypothesis of type 2 diabetes in 2008, Prof. Taylor and colleagues have published several fascinating studies with potentially large implications for the potential to put diabetes into remission. Three of the most important trials were the Counterpoint Study, the Counterbalance study and the DiRECT study. All of which will be discussed in this episode. Do you want to get your whey protein or pre-workout from a brand that's trustworthy? Get 20% off you first order at Legion Athletics with the code SIGMA: buylegion.com/sigma
5/5/202051 minutes, 24 seconds
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#330: Eric Trexler, PhD – Antioxidants, Oxidative Stress & Exercise Adaptations

Eric Trexler is Director of Education at Stronger By Science, where he co-hosts the SBS podcast. He also is one of the four contributors to the MASS Research Review. Eric has a prolific background in exercise science research, with more than 30 publications to his name by the time he completed his PhD at UNC-Chapel Hill. One-week anniversary sale of the MASS Research Review: https://sigmanutrition.com/mass
4/28/202052 minutes, 37 seconds
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#329: Diet & Inflammation

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium In this episode Danny & Alan discuss: Today's Topic in Focus: Inflammation & Diet. Today's Member Question: "Is the carcinogenic risk of this high enough that I should be throwing them away and starting again? Being consigned to the Quack Asylum in this episode is... "Leveraging-COVID-to-further-my-diet-idealogy". Danny & Alan's random recommendations of the week. Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
4/20/20201 hour, 8 minutes, 35 seconds
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#328: Meeta Singh, MD – Sleep, Immunity & Mental Health

Dr. Meeta Singh is a board-certified sleep medicine doctor and is currently the service chief of the sleep medicine at the Henry Ford sleep laboratory in Michigan. She did her training in psychiatry at the Mayo clinic and a sleep fellowship at the Henry Ford hospital. She is board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology as a psychiatrist and sleep medicine sub-specialist.
4/14/202046 minutes, 7 seconds
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#327: David Dunne – Behavioural Science in Nutrition

David’s a Performance Nutritionist with a track record in developing and delivering nutrition programmes to elite athletes, teams, Olympians and sports legends – all over the globe. He has worked in elite sport with PGA Tour golfers and various teams including Harlequins (rugby union), Bradford Bulls (rugby league) and Queens Park Rangers (soccer). David is currently completing PhD out of Liverpool Johns Moores University in the UK, doing research on digital media & behaviour change interventions in sports nutrition. David is the CEO of Hexis. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode327
4/8/202047 minutes, 8 seconds
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#326: Krista Scott-Dixon, PhD – Adaptability & Autonomy in the Nutrition Coaching Process

Dr. Krista Scott-Dixon is a former university professor and researcher who now designs curriculum for Precision Nutrition. She focuses on helping people make meaningful change through the Precision Nutrition Coaching and coaching Certification programs. Krista is also the author or co-author of several books, with the latest being Why Me Want Eat: Fixing Your Food Fuckedupitude. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode326
4/3/202046 minutes, 5 seconds
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#325: Kirk Parsley, MD - Stress, Sleep & Anxiety During a Pandemic

Dr. Kirk Parsley is a former SEAL, and received his Medical Degree from Bethesda, Uniformed Services University of Health Sciences (USUHS) in 2004. He served as an Undersea Medical Officer at Naval Special Warfare Group One from 2009 - 2013. While there, he led the development and supervised the group’s first Sports Medicine Rehabilitation center. Dr. Parsley has been a member of the American Academy of Sleep Medicine since 2006 and has served as Naval Special Warfare’s expert on Sleep Medicine. After leaving the Navy he went into concierge medicine and consulting. He continues to consult for multiple corporations, and professional athletes/teams. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode325
3/29/20201 hour, 11 minutes, 47 seconds
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#324: Fatima Cody Stanford, MD – Obesity Treatment & Weight Bias

Dr. Fatima Cody Stanford is an obesity medicine physician, scientist, educator, and policy maker at Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School. She is a national and international sought after expert in obesity medicine who bridges the intersection of medicine, public health, policy, and disparities. She completed her Obesity Medicine & Nutrition Fellowship at MGH/HMS after completing her internal medicine and pediatrics residency at the University of South Carolina. She has served as a health communications fellow at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and as a behavioral sciences intern at the American Cancer Society. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode324
3/24/202055 minutes, 41 seconds
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#323: COVID-19 & SARS-CoV-2 with Rizwan Sohail, MD

Dr. Rizwan Sohail is an infectious disease specialist based at the Mayo Clinic, where he holds a joint appointment with the divisions of Infectious Diseases and Cardiovascular Diseases. He completed his internship and residency in internal medicine at Michael Reese Hospital in Chicago and then a Fellowship in infectious diseases at the Mayo Clinic. In This Episode We Discuss Distinguishing between COVID-19 (disease) and the actual novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV2) What is different about this specific coronavirus compared to others This coronavirus has a respiratory droplet transmission The difference between respiratory droplet and airbourne transmission Time from exposure to SARS-CoV-2 to symptom The disease mechanism Current case reports on those hospitalized In those who have recovered, do we know yet whether they can be reinfected or if they have established immunity? Is the severity of the disease impacted by the length or magnitude of the exposure? On average, for someone infected how many people will they likely infect. How it compares to other viruses in terms of lethality and transmissibility Why social distancing (and potentially self- isolation) is so important Impact on healthcare system Mortality rate is not inherent to the virus alone, but mediated by how the healthcare system holds up, as well as population demographics, etc. Response needed now: a) public health/governmental; b) individuals (context dependent)
3/17/202057 minutes, 59 seconds
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#322: Dominic Munnelly – Coaching People To Health: Philosophy, Empathy & Community

Dominic Munnelly is one of Ireland’s leading personal trainers having worked in the business for over 20 years. He has supported many clients on their health and fitness journey advising them on training, nutrition, mobility and wellness and in the process helped people lose weight, get fit and lead a happier and healthier life. His background is Sports Science had he holds a degree from the University of Sunderland as well as other qualifications and certifications. He is a co-author of Move Train Nourish, The Sustainable Way to a Healthier you, published by The Collins Press. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode322/
3/12/202051 minutes, 25 seconds
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#321: Dave Feldman & Alan Flanagan – Debating LDL Causality & the “Lipid Triad”

Dave Feldman is a software engineer and runs the Cholesterol Code website. In 2015 Dave adopted a low-carb high-fat diet, which improved his overall health. However, upon seeing his LDL-cholesterol skyrocket, he set out learn all he could about blood lipids and health. Dave has gained prominence as a “LDL-skeptic” and promoter of his “lipid triad” hypothesis. This lipid triad relates to a situation where one sees high LDL-C, high HDL-C and low triglycerides. Dave hypothesises that in such a context, the high LDL-C does not confer high risk of cardiovascular disease. This is counter to the current consensus position of the lipid hypothesis, where LDL plays a causal role in atherosclerosis development. Alan Flanagan is the Research Communication Officer here at Sigma Nutrition. Alan is currently pursuing his PhD in nutrition at the University of Surrey, UK, with a research focus in chrononutrition. Alan previuosly completed a Masters in Nutritional Medicine at the same institution. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode321
2/25/20201 hour, 58 minutes, 5 seconds
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#320: Hannah Ritchie, PhD – Environmental Impacts of our Diet: Climate, Carbon Footprint & Land Use

Hannah Ritchie is a researcher at the University of Oxford, working at the online publication OurWorldinData.org. The publication aims to present empirical research on how the world is changing through the use of interactive data visualisations and explainers. Her research is focused on the intersection between sustainability and global development, with a focus on how to couple economic development and improved living standards with environmental sustainability. Hannah holds a BSc in Environmental Geoscience, and an MSc in Carbon Management from the University of Edinburgh. There, her doctoral studies focused on the assessment of global food systems and their capacity to address malnutrition and environmental sustainability simultaneously. At the University of Edinburgh she was also a lecturer in Sustainability, Society and Environment, and worked on the development of teaching programmes directed towards interdisciplinary approaches to sustainability. She has worked on a number of sustainability consulting and industry-led projects. LINK: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode320
2/18/202041 minutes, 42 seconds
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#319: Women in Science: Past Guests as Role Models in Nutrition

The release of this episode coincides with the International Day of Women and Girls in Science, which has taken place annually on the 11th February, since 2016. The day recognizes the critical role women and girls play in science and technology. The International Day of Women and Girls in Science is implemented by UNESCO and UN Women, in collaboration with intergovernmental agencies and institutions, as well as civil society partners, that aim to promote women and girls in science. The day’s purpose is to promote full and equal access to participation in science for women and girls. In this episode, we look back on a handul of women who have appeared on the podcast over the past 12 months, to highlight the outstanding work and achievements of women in nutrition science and health science research.
2/11/202037 minutes, 23 seconds
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#318: Chris Melby, PhD – Impact of Energy Flux on Weight Loss Maintenance

Dr. Chris Melby is a Professor in Food Science and Human Nutrition at Colorado State University. He has a long-standing research focus on the interplay between dietary eating patterns and exercise/physical activity in regard to energy metabolism and positive and negative energy balance. In recent times Dr. Melby has published work on the relationshop between energy flux and the probability of maintaining a previous loss of body weight. Long-term maintenance of weight loss requires sustained energy balance at the reduced body weight. This could be attained by coupling low total daily energy intake (TDEI) with low total daily energy expenditure (TDEE; low energy flux), or by pairing high TDEI with high TDEE (high energy flux). This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
2/4/202051 minutes, 14 seconds
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#317: Understanding Diet & Heart Disease Risk

This episode is a supplemental/follow-up episode to the ‘Diet & Cardiovascular Disease’ Series of Sigma Statements. If you have not read those statements, you can find them on sigmanutrition.com his episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com Sigma Statements: https://sigmanutrition.com/category/blog-post/statements/
1/28/20201 hour, 12 minutes, 30 seconds
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#316: Michael Grandner, PhD – Societal, Social & Psychological Influences on Sleep

Dr. Michael Grandner is the Director of the Sleep and Health Research Program and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry in the University of Arizona College of Medicine – Tucson. He is Board-Certified in Behavioral Sleep Medicine. His research focuses on how sleep and sleep-related behaviors are related to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, obesity, neurocognitive functioning, mental health, and longevity. He has published over 150 articles and chapters on issues relating to sleep and health and his work has been cited over 2,500 times. He is associate editor of the journal Sleep Health and serves on the editorial boards of the journals SLEEP, Journal of Clinical Sleep Medicine, Sleep Medicine, Behavioral Sleep Medicine, Journal of Sleep Research, and Frontiers in Neurology: Sleep and Circadian Rhythms. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com Sigma Statements: https://sigmanutrition.com/category/blog-post/statements/
1/22/202056 minutes, 12 seconds
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#315: Samia Mora, MD – Lipids, Lipoproteins & Atherosclerosis

Dr. Samia Mora is an Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, Boston, Massachusetts. She is a cardiovascular medicine specialist at the Brigham and Women’s Hospital, where she is the Director of the Center for Lipid Metabolomics. Dr. Mora’s research focuses on risk factors and prevention of cardiovascular disease. Dr. Mora received her undergraduate degree from Harvard University, and her medical degree from Harvard Medical School. She completed an internal medicine residency at Massachusetts General Hospital and a cardiovascular disease fellowship at The Johns Hopkins Hospital, where she also obtained a Masters in Health Science (Epidemiology) from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com Sigma Statement: https://sigmanutrition.com/lipids
1/15/202056 minutes, 30 seconds
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#314: Q&A – Hemochromatosis, Sodium, Bone Health, & More!

[05:00] how should we define calorie restriction in the context of its scientifically observed connection with longevity? [12.30] I'd love to hear your thoughts about the consumption of duck meat. Does it get categorized as red meat consumption in epidemiological studies? [14.10] Can obese or overweight women experience REDs when dieting? If so how do you manage the risk vs. reward of losing excessive body fat vs inducing REDs? [21.20] How much the Nutrition will change in 10 years, and how much impact it will have in our daily lives? [25.00] Cancer recovery: What type food to eat and training protocols to follow whilst healing after operation  and what type of exercise during chemo? [26.00] I'd love to know what your "weaknesses" are! [34.00] What non-tracking methods do you use for combat athletes? [38.20] can we adapt to higher fat oxidation during exercise so that exogenous CHO isn’t necessary? [42.55] How do you plan a diet to lose muscle mass healthily? [48.40] Does eating a high-fat diet (keto) cause heart health issues? [52.34] Is salt good or bad for your health? [53.38] Does calcium supplement improve bone health and prevent bone fracture? [62.55] Hemochromatosis and the Irish [68.10] In nutritional science and resistance training I'm witnessing what appears to be a shift from a physicalist based approach to a phenomenological based approach. Do you see a similar transition taking place?
1/9/20201 hour, 17 minutes
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#313: Fergus Connolly, PhD – Authenticity, Elite Human Performance & Getting the Best From Others

Dr. Fergus Connolly is one of the world’s foremost human performance thought leaders and influencers, and has applied performance science with leading sports, military, and business teams. He is the only coach to have full times roles in every major sport. Fergus has served as Director of Elite Performance for the San Francisco 49ers, Sports Science Director with the Welsh Rugby Union, and Performance Director for University of Michigan Football. He has guided coaches, support staff and players in the NBA, Australian Rules Football and international cricket. Fergus has also trained world boxing champions and advises elite military units and companies across the globe. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
1/1/202051 minutes, 32 seconds
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#312: Allison Brager – Sleep Architecture, Chronotypes & Rescuing Performance

Dr. Allison Brager is a behavioral neurobiologist with an expertise in sleep and circadian rhythms for the United States Army (active duty), as well as their contributions to psychiatric, neurological, and inflammatory disease states. She is currently the Director of Human Performance Operations and Outreach Education at the US Army Warrior Fitness Training Center in Fort Knox, Kentucky. Her work has examined sleep and activity regulatory mechanisms as well as adaptation and resiliency to environmental stressors such as exercise, jet lag, and sleep deprivation. She consults with US Olympic, collegiate, and professional sporting teams and major police and fire departments (e.g., NYPD, Boston) in preparation for travel and to create sleep friendly environments. She has served on the Board of Directors of the Sleep Research Society and presently chair a public advocacy committee for the Society for Research on Biological Rhythms. She previously was a Postdoctoral Fellow at the Morehouse School of Medicine in Atlanta, Georgia, as well as the Chief of the Sleep Research Center at the Walter Reed Army Institute of Research. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
12/17/201943 minutes, 22 seconds
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#311: Andrew Chappell, PhD – Diet Strategies in Elite Natural Bodybuilders

Dr. Andrew Chappell is a Lecturer/Researcher at Robert Gordon University, conducting research in sports nutrition, with a specific focus on bodybuilding. Andrew is also a world-class natural bodybuilder with an unprecendented level of national and international success; having 2 Pro Cards and 6 British titles to his name. Andrew also has judged physique contests for over 7 years and has judged at British and World Finals. Andrew holds a PhD from the Rowett Institute of Nutrition and Health. He also holds a BSc in Sport and Exercise Science and a MSc in Human Nutrition and Metabolism. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
12/10/201957 minutes, 5 seconds
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#310: Meeta Singh, MD – Sleep & Circadian Disruption in Pro Athletes: Dealing With the NBA Schedule

Dr Meeta Singh is a sleep doctor whose work and research focuses on “coaching the sleep muscle” to help maximize performance in both individual athletes and sports teams. She is the Service chief of the sleep medicine, and section head and medical director at the Henry Ford sleep laboratory in Michigan. She did her training in psychiatry at the Mayo clinic and a sleep fellowship at the Henry Ford hospital. She is board-certified by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology as a psychiatrist and sleep medicine sub-specialist. She has served as a consultant for multiple NFL, MLB, NHL and NBA teams. Dr. Singh performs athletic sleep assessments with personalized prescriptions for better sleep. She also helps sports teams and athletes with their travel management with a focus on addressing sleep deprivation and jet lag and maximizing athletic performance. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get 20% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
12/3/201951 minutes, 49 seconds
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#309: Ciaran O’ Regan – Epistemology, Ignorance Navigation & the Error-Correcting Machinery of Science

Ciaran O’ Regan is currently a strength & conditioning coach in Cork, Ireland, predominantly working with rugby teams. He recently began a Professional Doctorate under John Kiely of University of Central Lancashire. Ciaran has a BSc. in Sport & Exercise Science from the University of Limerick. Ciaran also works online with combat sport athletes on their nutrition and fight preparation here at Sigma Nutrition. This episode is sponsored by Legion Athletics. Get up to 30% off your order using the code SIGMA. All US order come with free shipping and all international orders have free shipping on orders over $99. All orders have a money-back guarentee. Check out the products at buylegion.com
11/26/20191 hour, 12 minutes, 29 seconds
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#308: Robin Tucker, PhD, RD – Impact of Sleep on Taste Perception, Cravings & Food Reward

Dr. Robin Tucker is currently an Assistant Professor of Food Science & Human Nutrition at Michigan State University. The Ingestive Behavior Lab at MSU, under Dr. Tucker’s direction, examines the biological and environmental factors that influence human feeding practices.She is especially interested in how the chemical senses (taste and smell) and sleep influence food intake, physical activity, and body composition. Robin is a registered dietitian and has a PhD in Nutrition Science from Purdue University, focusing on Concentration-Ingestive Behavior. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode308/
11/19/201955 minutes, 29 seconds
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#307: Stephan Guyenet, PhD – Are Popular Nutrition & Health Books Trustworthy, Accurate & Health-Promoting?

Stephan Guyenet is an obesity researcher, neurobiologist, and author. In addition to his research, he enjoys synthesizing and communicating science for a general audience over at his hugely successful blog. Stephan has a PhD in neurobiology (University of Washington). He is the author of ‘The Hungry Brain’, which dives into the causes of obesity from the perspective of overeating and related brain chemistry. He is also the founder of Red Pen Reviews, a site that uses a structured expert review method to deliver the most informative, consistent, and unbiased nutrition/health book reviews available. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode307
11/12/20191 hour, 1 minute, 21 seconds
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#306: Daniel Davey – Food Preparation Skills, Being an Effective Nutritionist & Creativity

Daniel Davey has worked as a performance nutritionist with a host of elite athletes in a range of sports such as golf, athletics, rugby and GAA. He is perhaps best known for his roles working as a performance nutritionist with with Leinster Rugby and the Dublin senior footballers. Daniel holds an MSc in Nutrition, Physical Activity & Public Health from the University of Bristol, in addition to a BSc in Science from University College Dublin. As an athlete Daniel has played Gaelic football at intercounty level for Sligo and won an All-Ireland club football medal in 2016 with Ballyboden St’ Enda’s in Dublin. Show notes: sigmanutrition.com/episode306
11/5/201953 minutes, 8 seconds
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#305: John Berardi, PhD - Be a "Change Maker" in your Health & Fitness Career

John Berardi, PhD is best known as the co-founder of Precision Nutrition. He is also the founder of Change Maker Academy, which is devoted to helping people turn their passion for health and fitness into a successful career. Over the last 15 years he has advised Apple, Equinox, Nike, and Titleist, as well as the San Antonio Spurs, Carolina Panthers, US Open Champ Sloane Stephens, and 2-division UFC Champ Georges St. Pierre. Get a free chapter to John's new book (or pre-order the book) at the show notes page: sigmanutrition.com/episode305
10/28/201955 minutes, 34 seconds
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#304: Tommy Wood, MD, PhD – Neurodegenerative Disease, Traumatic Brain Injury & Genetics

Dr. Tommy Wood is a Research Assistant Professor at the University of Washington in the Pediatrics Department. esearch focuses on ways to increase resilience of, and treat injury of, the developing brain. He studied biochemistry at Cambridge, received a medical degree from Oxford, and has a PhD in physiology and neuroscience from the University of Oslo. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode304
10/22/201954 minutes, 33 seconds
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#303: Brad Dieter, PhD - How Do We Tackle Type 2 Diabetes & Lifestyle-related Chronic Disease?

Brad is a trained Exercise Physiologist, Molecular Biologist, and Biostatistician. He completed his a post-doctoral fellowship in translational science at Providence Medical Research Center, where he studied how metabolism and inflammation regulate molecular mechanisms disease and is involved in discovering novel therapeutics for diabetic complications. His research career has spanned the translational spectrum utilizing basic science, human trials, and machine learning in large data sets to identify and develop novel therapies and technologies. His long term career goals include leading teams of people to make major inroads in health care through the development of new technology. Brad is also passionate about scientific outreach and bringing science to the public. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode303
10/15/201951 minutes, 46 seconds
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#302: Leonie Heilbronn, PhD – Alternate-Day Fasting, Early Time-Restricted Feeding & Caloric Restriction

Associate Professor Leonie Heilbronn is the leader of the Obesity and Metabolism group based at the University of Adelaide, Australia. She has a sustained record of translating basic discoveries in nutrition to humans and has contributed to current concepts of caloric restriction (CR), intermittent fasting (IF) and time restricted eating (TRE) in humans. She is keenly interested in understanding mechanisms of insulin resistance in skeletal muscle and in adipose tissue utilising nutritional perturbations. She is an Associate Editor of Obesity and Obesity Research and Clinical Practice. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode302
10/8/201937 minutes, 10 seconds
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#301: John Berardi, PhD - Tribalism in Nutrition

John Berardi, PhD is best known as the co-founder of Precision Nutrition. He is also the founder of Change Maker Academy, which is devoted to helping people turn their passion for health and fitness into a successful career. Over the last 15 years he has advised Apple, Equinox, Nike, and Titleist, as well as the San Antonio Spurs, Carolina Panthers, US Open Champ Sloane Stephens, and 2-division UFC Champ Georges St. Pierre. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode301
10/1/201956 minutes, 14 seconds
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#300: The Random Episode

Sigma Nutrition Radio has reached the 300th episode! To mark the occassion, Patreon supporters of the podcast and subscribers to the Sigma Synopsis email were able to submit questions about anything they wished. In this episode, Gar Benn joins me to go through some of the questions submitted. This episode focuses on all the random questions submitted about a range of things, from my schedule to religion to career highlights to living in Ireland, and everything in between!
9/26/20191 hour, 8 minutes, 52 seconds
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#299: Mark Hopkins, PhD – Compensatory Eating, Exercise-induced Weight Loss & Energy Balance Homeostasis

Dr. Mark Hopkins is a lecturer in nutritional physiology at the University of Leeds, UK. His research focuses primarily on the physiological mechanisms of appetite control, and the interaction between diet, physical activity and appetite control. This includes examining the physiological and behavioural responses to dietary and exercise-induced weight loss. Mark is a member of the Association for the Study of Obesity, the British Association of Sport & Exercise Science and The Nutrition Society. Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode299/
9/17/201935 minutes, 10 seconds
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#298: David Zeevi, PhD – Genes of Gut Microbes & Inter-Individual Variation in Glucose Response

David Zeevi is an independent research fellow at Rockefeller University in New York. His current work focuses on developing computational methods for studying microbial ecology in the human gut and in the marine environment, and its contribution to human and environmental health. Previously he completed his PhD at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel under Prof. Eran Segal, studying the human microbiome and its effect on host health and personalized nutrition. He was lead author on two important studies to come from the lab, published in Nature and Cell respectively. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode298/
9/10/201942 minutes, 2 seconds
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#297: Cliff Harvey, PhD – Carbohydrate-Restriction, Ketosis & Neuroprotection

Cliff Harvey has a PhD in Nutrition from Auckland University of Technology (AUT), with his research focus being on ketosis, ketogenesis, and individual responses to diet. His research interests include MCTs, keto-induction, “keto-flu”, and finding appropriate carbohydrate intake for individuals based on their metabolic state, activity and ethno-genetic factors. He is a Registered Clinical Nutritionist in New Zealand, with over 20 years of experience as a practitioner. Cliff was one of the very first practitioners to begin prescribing and working with low-carb, high-fat (LCHF), ketogenic, and lower-carb, higher-protein diets in the late 1990s. Cliff is the founder of the Holistic Performance Institute. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode297
9/3/20191 hour, 5 minutes, 34 seconds
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#296: Alan Flanagan – Circadian Entrainment, Chronotypes & Chrononutrition

Alan Flanagan is currently a PhD researcher at the University of Surrey, UK. His research is in the general field of chrononutrition, with a specific focus on how calorie distribution and timing may impact health & energy balance. Alan has a Masters in Nutritional Medicine, also from the University of Surrey. Alan is also a qualified lawyer, practising in Dublin, Ireland before embarking on his PhD. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode296/
8/27/20191 hour, 19 minutes, 49 seconds
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#295: Ben House, PhD – How Much of a Surplus Do Advanced Lifters Need for Optimal Muscle Gain?

Ben House has a Ph.D. in Nutrition from the University of Texas at Austin. Ben has worked as a Strength and Conditioning Coach and Nutritionist since 2006. He is currently the owner and founder of Functional Medicine Costa Rica, where he hosts courses, mentorships and retreats. House has numerous publications in peer reviewed scientific journals such as The International Journal of Obesity, has presented his work at multiple international conferences, and lectures regularly on health and nutrition at The University of Texas.   SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode295/
8/21/201948 minutes, 47 seconds
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#294: Nicola Guess, PhD, RD - Prediabetes & Type 2 Diabetes Nutrition

Nicola Guess is a Registered Dietitian with a PhD in the dietary management of prediabetes from Imperial College London. She is currently Head of the Nutrition Unit at Dasman Diabetes Institute (DDI) in Kuwait. Nicola is a research fellow at King’s College London where her research focuses on the role of diet in the prevention and management of type 2 diabetes. She has a particular interest in the use of low-carbohydrate diets in the management of type 2 diabetes, and leads a research programme investigating dietary modification – including increasing protein or the use of very-low-calorie-diets – on the factors underlying type 2 diabetes. Nicola received her Registered Dietitian qualification in the United States which included clinical rotations at the Baylor College of Medicine, and world-famous Weight Management Clinic at the Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas. Nicola’s expertise in the area of diet and type 2 diabetes is well recognised. She is currently a National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) Guidelines Expert Adviser and was a Diabetes UK Research Fellow. She sits on the Diabetes UK Clinical Guidelines Committee which sets priorities for diabetes research in the UK; is a panel member of the Royal College of General Practitioners Lifestyle Group and was previously a topic expert on the NICE Guidelines Committee for the Prevention of Type 2 Diabetes. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode294/
8/12/201956 minutes, 5 seconds
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#293: Jessica Setnick, RD – Orthorexia: Positive vs. Pathological Nutrition

Jessica Setnick background in human behavior (she holds a Bachelor’s degree in Anthropology from The University of Pennsylvania) combined with her expertise in dysfunctional and disordered eating (she is a Registered Dietitian with a Master’s Degree and writes books and articles about eating disorders). A Certified Eating Disorder Dietitian and CEDRD Supervisor, Jessica is the author of The Eating Disorder Clinical Pocket Guide and Eating Disorders Boot Camp. She is a co-founder of IFEDD, the International Federation of Eating Disorder Dietitians.
8/7/201939 minutes, 34 seconds
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#292: Prof. Alexandra Johnstone, PhD – Appetite Control, Satiety & Diet Interventions

Prof. Alexandra Johnstone is recognized as a leading innovative UK researcher within the field of human appetite control and specifically, the role of dietary protein. She is a Professor at The Rowett Institute at the University of Aberdeen in Scotland. She has published an extensive list of studies to assess the impact of diets on the body and the mind and to investigate how different meals and drinks affect our appetite, health and wellbeing. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode292/
7/31/201947 minutes, 28 seconds
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#291: Gab Fundaro, PhD – Gut Microbiome, Bacterial Diversity & the Impact of Diet & Probiotics

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Dr. Gabrielle Fundaro is a coach and science communicator for Renaissance Periodization coach. Dr. Fundaro is a former Assistant Professor of Exercise Science at Georgia Gwinnett College, and holds a PhD in Human Nutrition. In This Episode We Discuss: - Bacertial diversity: eveness & richness - What is an “optimal” gut microbiome composition - How rapidly does it change on changing diet? - Relationship between microbiome and disease states: which way around does this occur? SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode291/ Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
7/24/20191 hour, 7 minutes, 5 seconds
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#290: Menno Henselmans & Eric Helms, PhD - Diet Breaks, Calorie Cycling & Muscle Retention

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium In This Episode We Discuss: How low is “too low” for low calorie days? How much do very low calorie days or fasting impact muscle retention? Is there a physiological benefit to diet breaks and refeeds? Eric is currently a Research Fellow at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. His work is focused on training and nutrition interventions that could have implications for bodybuilders, powerlifters and other strength athletes. Eric has many peer reviewed publications and currently has many ongoing research projects and collaborations. Previously, Eric completed his PhD at AUT. He also holds a BS in fitness and wellness, an MS in exercise science, and a MPhil in sports nutrition. Once a former business consultant specialized in advanced statistical data analysis, Menno has MSc from the University of Warwick (UK) in that area. Menno’s background in science and statistics helped him to develop a unique way of approach questions in fitness. Menno is a published academic author and has spoken at some of the world’s biggest evidence-based training conferences and events. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode290 Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
7/15/20191 hour, 13 minutes, 17 seconds
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#289 Ciaran Fairman, PhD – Exercise Interventions in Cancer Treatment

Ciaran is a post-doc research fellow at the Exercise Medicine Research Institute (EMRI) at Edith Cowan University in Western Australia. Ciaran completed his PhD in the Exercise and Behavioral Medicine Laboratory at The Ohio State University under the mentorship of Dr. Brian Focht. Here, his research focused on the physiological and psychosocial responses to physical activity lifestyle interventions in a variety of clinical populations including breast and prostate cancer, and individuals with knee osteoarthritis. Ciaran is also strong advocate of the dissemination/translation of scientific research to a variety of audiences. He is the founder of REACH (Research in Exercise and Cancer Health), a company designed to provide evidence-based guidelines of physical activity to health/medical professionals and individuals with cancer. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com
7/5/20191 hour, 3 minutes, 38 seconds
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#288: Ted Ryce: Meditation, Communication & Understanding Behaviours

Ted is an online coach and podcaster. He has been in the fitness industry for over 20 years, with much of that spent as a sought-after personal trainer in Miami, Florida. During his coaching career he has worked with a variety of clients including Fortune 500 CEOs and celebrities, including Richard Branson and Robert Downey Jr. In more recent years he has continued to coach people online whilst being based in several different locations around the world.   Show notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode288/
6/26/201950 minutes, 35 seconds
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#287: Gregg Slater - Dietary Fatigue, Nutrition Periodization & the Deficit-Adherence Model

Gregg Slater is head of education at Lift The Bar, a company providing education to fitness professionals. After completing his BSc in Sports and Exercise Science Gregg started out his professional life as a Physical Education Teacher before making the transition towards his passion for fitness as a Physical Training Instructor in the Royal Air Force for 10 years. In 2015 he took  up his role as Head of Education for Lift The Bar. Over this time Gregg has designed a number of acclaimed courses on a variety of topics, mentored trainers, consulted with gyms and runs regular educational seminars for personal trainers. In This Episode We Discuss “Dietary fatigue” The deficit-adherence model (dietary performance = deficit – fatigue) Balancing diet sustainability, rate of progress and adherence How previous experiences with diets shoudl be taken into account Transitioning from a period of dieting to a period of weight maintenance Dietary autoregulation SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode287/
6/19/201947 minutes, 54 seconds
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#286: James Morton, PhD - Fuelling Elite Sport: Team Sky, Liverpool FC & Carbohydrate Periodization

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Dr. James Morton is a Professor of Exercise Metabolism at Liverpool John Moores University. He has an extensive list of published peer-review research in high impact journals, as well as being deeply involved in the highly-regarded sport science and nutrition programs at LJMU. James was Head of Nutrition at Team Sky (now Team Ineos) during a period where the team captured 5 Tour de France titles. Previously, Dr. Morton worked as head performance nutritionist at Liverpool Football Club. He also also worked with professional and amateur boxers. Show Notes: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode286/ Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
6/11/20191 hour, 12 minutes, 44 seconds
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#285: What is Health? A Conceptual Framework

Intro to Danny’s framework for defining “health”: 1) Physical Reality – 06.30; 2) Contentedness – 14.08; 3) Psychological Framework – 31.37 DUBLIN SEMINAR: https://sigmanutrition.com/healthseminar/ SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode285
6/4/201950 minutes, 12 seconds
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#284: Simone Harding – Tackling Negative Body Image & Weight Stigma

Simone is an Intuitive Eating Counsellor, currently finishing MSc Nutrition and Behaviour at Bournemouth University. She is also a PhD Counselling psychology candidate. Her academic research area is body image and adaptive eating, and she practices as a therapist in the field of nutrition, chronic dieting, body image and eating disorders. In This Episode We Discuss The scale of the problem of negative body image Tying appearance to self-worth & personal identity External drivers of negative body image Root causes of obesity Why “self-responsability” isn’t helpful at scale Steps in modifying body image Self-talk: moving from negative to neutral to positive Can non-weight loss interventions improve health to the same degree as those that lead to weight loss in “at risk” groups (e.g. those with diabetes or with obesity)? SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode284/
5/28/20191 hour, 15 minutes, 44 seconds
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#283: Alun Williams, PhD - The Genetics & Science Behind the Historic Caster Semenya/IAAF Case

Dr. Williams is the Director of the Sports Genomics Laboratory and is a Reader in Sport and Exercise Genomics at Manchester Metropolitan University. Alun is also Honorary Senior Research Associate at University College London. He has a PhD from the University of Birmingham. He has published expert position statements about the ethics and practicality of applying genetic technologies in sport. And was recently involved in the historic IAAF vs. Caster Semenya case related to testosterone levels within athletes with differences of sexual development (DSD). SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode283/
5/21/201946 minutes, 18 seconds
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#282: Louise Burke, PhD - Project Supernova: The Science of Fuelling Elite Athletes

Professor Louise Burke has been one of the most highly respected and accomplished sports nutrition researchers over several decades. She has been the head of sports nutrition at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS) for nearly 30 years, publishing a vast number of important, novel and high-quality papers in the sports nutrition field. Professor Bourke’s research interests lie in nutritional intervention strategies for sporting performance. The goal of Louise’s research is to find practical nutrition strategies that athletes and coaches can use to achieve optimum performance. Often this will involve examining metabolism during and after exercise to discover how complex systems work. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode282/
5/14/201957 minutes, 11 seconds
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SNR #281: Jake Linardon, PhD – Eating Disorders, Binge Eating & Body Image

Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium Dr. Jake Linardon is a Lecturer in Psychology at Deakin University, Melbourne Australia. He started working at Deakin in 2018, shortly finishing his PhD at Australian Catholic University (2017). He continues to research into eating disorders, with a primary focus on testing and evaluating a broad range of treatment approaches for eating disorders. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode281/ Click here to subscribe to Sigma Nutrition Premium
5/6/20191 hour, 10 minutes, 51 seconds
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SNR #280: Kirsty Elliot-Sale, PhD – Energy Availability, Menstrual Disorders & RED-S

Dr Elliott-Sale is an associate professor in female physiology at Nottingham Trent University. There, she is also the Head of the Musculoskeletal Physiology Research Group. She is also responsible for teaching on the undergraduate and postgraduate Sport Science degree programmes. Dr Elliott-Sale teaches mainly in the areas of Exercise Physiology and particularly in Female Physiology, Performance, and Health. In This Episode We Discuss: --> Menstrual disorders: secondary amenorrhea (loss of 3 or more consectively) vs. oligomenorrhea (cycle longer than 45 days), vs.Functional --> Hypothalamic Amenorrhea (FHA) vs milder symptoms of some dysfunction --> What is happening on a hormonal level that ties in with menstrual issues? --> Understanding “energy availability” --> How do we quantify what is “low” energy availability? --> Relative Energy Deficiency in Sport VS. Female Athlete Triad --> Landmark papers that really advanced understanding of this concept Triad can lead to decreased estrogen. --> Implications for contraceptive pill users? --> Difference in risk between genders? --> Difference in expression of symptoms among genders? --> Reduced EA = increased illness/injury and thus more opportunities to train are lost. --> Recommendations for at risk athletes --> The screening and diagnosis of RED-S is challenging, as symptomatology can be subtle. --> Individuality: How great the energy deficiency needs to be for that individual to be symptomatic SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode280
4/30/201943 minutes, 2 seconds
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SNR #279: Avrum Bluming, MD & Carol Tavris, PhD – Estrogen, Menopause & Misconceptions About Hormone Replacement

Avrum Bluming received his MD from the Columbia College of Physicians and Surgeons. He spent four years as a senior investigator for the National Cancer Institute and for two of those years was director of the Lymphoma Treatment Center in Kampala, Uganda. He organized the first study of lumpectomy for the treatment of breast cancer in Southern California in 1978, and for more than two decades he has been studying the benefits and risks of hormone replacement therapy administered to women with a history of breast cancer. Dr. Bluming has served as a clinical professor of medicine at USC and has been an invited speaker at the Royal College of Physicians in London and the Pasteur Institute in Paris. He was elected to mastership in the American College of Physicians, an honor accorded to only five hundred of the over one hundred thousand board-certified internists in this country. Carol Tavris received her PhD in social psychology from the University of Michigan. Her books include Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me), with Elliot Aronson; Anger: The Misunderstood Emotion, and The Mismeasure of Woman. She has written articles, op-eds, and book reviews on topics in psychological science for a wide array of publications — including the Los Angeles Times, the New York Times Book Review, the Wall Street Journal, and the TLS — and a column, “The Gadfly,” for Skeptic magazine. She is a fellow of the Association for Psychological Science and has received numerous awards for her efforts to promote gender equality, science, and skepticism. SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode279/
4/23/20191 hour, 2 minutes, 2 seconds
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SNR #278: Jackson Peos – The ICECAP Trial, Intermittent Energy Restriction & the Science of Diet Breaks

Jackson is currently completing his PhD at the University of Western Australia in Perth. He is currently running the largest dieting study ever done on athletes in Australia. This research called the ICECAP trial (Intermittent versus Continuous Energy restriction Compared in an Athlete Population), looks at the effect of including a “diet break” week after every 3 weeks of dieting, compared to a continuous hypocaloric diet for the duration of the full dieting period. In This Episode We Discuss: - Theoretical reasons for including diet breaks and refeeds within dieting periods - Distinguishing between intermittent fasting protocols and intermittent moderate energy restriction (MOD-IER) - Lessons learned from the MATADOR trial - What might differ between obese and athletic populations - Design of Jackson’s “ICECAP trial” - Determining the duration, frequency and magnitude of diet breaks, refeeds and energy restriction - Current best practices for implementing these strategies SIGMA EVENTS: https://sigmanutrition.com/events
4/16/20191 hour, 18 minutes, 58 seconds
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SNR #277: Eric Helms, PhD - Non-Quantitative Dieting, Personal Experiments & Optimal Weight Gain for Hypertrophy

Eric is currently a Research Fellow at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. His work is focused on training and nutrition interventions that could have implications for bodybuilders, powerlifters and other strength athletes. Eric has many peer reviewed publications and currently has many ongoing research projects and collaborations. Previously, Eric completed his PhD at AUT. He also holds a BS in fitness and wellness, an MS in exercise science, and a MPhil in sports nutrition. For the better part of his career he’s been a coach at 3D Muscle Journey, working with drug free strength and physique competitors at all levels. Eric, along with Greg Nuckols and Dr. Mike Zourdos, created the monthly reserach review MASS (Monthly Applications in Strength Sports), which breaks apart some of the recent research carried out that is relevant to strength athletes, bodybuilders and powerlifters. He is also the author of the highly popular Muscle & Strength Pyramids set of books. As an athlete, Eric has competed as a bodybuilder and powerlifter. This year (2019) he returns to the bodybuilding stage for the first time in eight years, for his fourth competition season. In This Episode We Discuss: Ongoing trial looking at effects of differnt sizes of caloric surplus for muscle gain Eric’s unconventional appraoch to his current contest prep Non-quantitative tracking and assessment of progress Applying lessons from bodybuilding to other areas of life SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode277/
4/9/20191 hour, 8 minutes, 34 seconds
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SNR #276: Nick Gant, PhD - Neurometabolism: Brain Function, Fatigue & Nutritient Interventions

Nick Gant is Director of the Exercise Neurometabolism Laboratory at the University of Auckland. His group uses interdisciplinary approaches from the nutritional sciences and neurosciences to investigate the role of nutrition in brain health and performance. Nick is particularly interested in foods and supplements that prevent brain fatigue and improve physical and cognitive function. His research is currently funded by the Royal Society of New Zealand, the Health Research Council of New Zealand, and several industrial partnerships. He partners with clinicians and dieticians within the NZ Centre for Brain Research and provides scientific and educational support for elite athletes, government and military organisations In This Episode We Discuss: Understanding fatigue Hypoxia-induced decrements in cognitive performance Role of caffeine and stimulants in “rescuing” performance in high-fatigue/high-stress states Creatine for cognitive function and brain health Potential for creatine mitigating traumatic brain injury (TBI) Can ketones aid in mitigating traumatic brain injury? Thoughts on cognitive impact of nicotine CHO mouth rinsing: proposed mechanism of action SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode276
4/2/20191 hour, 15 minutes, 54 seconds
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SNR #275: Kate Solovieva - Psychology, Empathy & Coping Strategies for Better Coaching

Kate has both undergraduate and graduate degrees in Psychology and spent time as a psychology professor at a college and university level. She currently is a health & nutrition coach, working for Precision Nutrition, where she has coached over 1,000 people. Now she coaches fitness professionals on how to be better coaches. In This Episode We Discuss: --> Using an understanding of human psychology to improve coaching outcomes --> How we go about rationalizing our behaviour. --> How coaches can develop empathy --> Fitting the diet to your lifestyle: how much leeway/flexible does one give? --> The best skills a coach can teach themself --> Resilience --> Proactive and reactive coping strategies SHOW NOTES: sigmanutrition.com/episode275
3/26/201949 minutes, 11 seconds
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SNR #274: James Lindsay, PhD - When Peer-Review Goes Wrong: Lessons From the Grievance Studies Affair

James A. Lindsay holds degrees in physics and mathematics, with a doctorate in the latter. His previous books include Dot, Dot, Dot: Infinity Plus God Equals Folly and Life in Light of Death. He has been in the news for submitting, along with Peter Boghossian and Helen Pluckrose, a series of hoax papers to peer-review (seven of which were published) in fields that categorise as “grievance studies”. SHOW NOTES: sigmanutrition.com/episode274
3/19/201958 minutes, 13 seconds
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SNR #273: Bryan Chung, MD, PhD – Dealing with Science Overwhelm & Improving Your Relationship with Research

Bryan Chung is a plastic/hand surgeon and PhD research designer. He is a methodologist who improves people’s relationship with science. In This Episode We Discuss: --> Bryan’s advice column for people who have “relationship problems with Science” --> If things merely confirm what you are already doing, why you should filter it out --> How to determine what is practically meaningful from a study --> The importance of establishing what the research question is --> How to deal with the daunting nature of statistics in research --> Why you’re already good enough to start engaging with research SHOW NOTES: sigmanutrition.com/episode273
3/12/201953 minutes, 36 seconds
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SNR #272: Barbora de Courten, PhD – Effect of Carnosine on Glucose Metabolism and Chronic Disease Risk

Professor Barbora de Courten, MD PhD FRACP MPH is a Professor at Monash University, Australia. She is a National Heart Foundation Future Leader Fellow and a specialist physician with a PhD in epidemiology, extensive training in clinical trials (NIH) and a Master of Public Health (Monash University). She has expertise across the translational research continuum from epidemiology, human mechanistic studies to clinical trials and public health interventions through to practice. She is passionate about research into holistic approaches to prevention and treatment of chronic diseases by promoting health through safe, low-cost and easily scalable interventions with the potential to have an immediate public health impact to prevent and treat chronic diseases. She believes this will impact not only health of individuals but also be beneficial to our society and environment we live in. Her vision is to establish new strategies for prevention and management of chronic diseases, specifically obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Her goal is that her research findings will ultimately translate into treatment guidelines, reduced diabetes and cardiovascular morbidity and mortality and reduced healthcare costs. In This Episode We Discuss: --> Mechanisms by which certain behaviours (inactivity, poor diet, smoking, etc.) increase chronic disease risk: inflammation, oxidative stress and advanced glycation (AGE formation). --> What is carnosine? --> How might carnosine supplementation reduce risk? --> Dosage and timing used in trials to date --> Prof. de Courten’s trial showing improvements in insulin sensitivity and an oral glucose tolerance test --> As beta-alanine works by increasing muscle carnosine concentration, could it be useful for the health? SHOW NOTES: https://sigmanutrition.com/episode272/
3/9/201929 minutes, 43 seconds
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SNR #271: Prof. John Hawley – Circadian Metabolomics & Time-Restricted Feeding

Prof. Hawley is Director of the Mary MacKillop Institute for Health at Australian Catholic Universtiy in Melbourne, Australia. He has published over 220 scientific manuscripts, written over 100 articles for technical journals and has authored numerous book chapters for exercise biochemistry and sports medicine texts. He is an Associate Editor for Diabetologia and currently sits on the Editorial Boards of many international journals. He is a frequently invited speaker at both National and International scientific meetings. John’s primary research focus includes the interaction of exercise and diet on the regulation of fat and carbohydrate metabolism, particularly within skeletal muscle, the molecular basis of exercise training adaptation and the cellular bases underlying exercise-induced improvements in insulin action. In This Episode We Discuss: --> Current work being done by Prof. Hawley’s lab on circadian metabolomics Defining the human metabolome and circadian metabolomics --> Comparative analysis of the circadian metabolome in the serum versus peripheral tissues (i.e., skeletal muscle) --> Impact of high-fat or high-carb diet on the daily variation in metabolites --> How dietary intake is a strong zeitgeber for peripheral clocks --> Tissue-specificity of the human circadian metabolome --> Time-restricted feeding in animal models and in humans Join the Sigma Synopsis for free: https://sigmanutrition.com/sigma-synopsis/
3/4/201933 minutes, 59 seconds
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SNR #270: Alexander Kolliari-Turner – Anabolic Steroids, Muscle Memory & Advances in Drug Testing

Alex is currently completing a PhD at the University of Brighton in the UK, investigating the implications of RNA sequencing in the detection of anabolic steroid use and the harnessing of the molecular mechanisms of “muscle memory”. He is currently conducting research aiming to address a hypothesis that suggests that the myonuclei obtained via strength training and anabolic steroid usage are retained and therefore provide long term advantages to steroid users. In This Episode We Discuss: --> The mechanism of hypertrophy via myonuclei accumulation --> Defining “muscle memory” in relation to myonuclei --> Animal models that show myonuclei don’t dissappear after atrophy --> Anabolic steroids activate the stem cells in muscle (satellite cells) resulting in a donation of their nuclei into muscle fibres --> How drug testing works --> How you prove someone has taken exogenous testosterone via T:E ratios --> The Athlete Biological Passport --> Thoughts on the recent Jon Jones case --> Next generation “omic” technologies such as transcriptomics could enhance the testing protocols If you are based in the UK and want to be involved in advancing science in this area and be involved in Alex’s trial, then email him at: [email protected]
2/26/20191 hour, 5 minutes, 58 seconds
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SNR #269: Lyndon Purcell & Jacob Schepis: Physiology, Hypertrophy & Discussions

In This Episode We Discuss: --> How physiology enhances ability to make really training and nutrition decisions --> Applying “form follows function” to biological systems --> If training a certain way and observing the result tells us whether it “works” or not, understanding physiology can tell us WHY it worked --> Importance of lift execution for hypertrophy progress --> The trap of always assume “more volume is best” --> The value of debating ideas and open discussions yndon is Head of Education at JPS Health & Fitness in Melbourne, Australia. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Exercise and Sport Science and is completing a Masters in High Performance Sport Science. He is also a qualified strength and conditioning coach and has coached many athletes over the past number of years. Jacob is the founder and director of JPS Health & Fitness in Melbourne, Australia. Having worked in the industry for close to a decade, Jacob’s wealth of knowledge coupled with his experience in the trenches has led him to become one of Melbourne’s most sought out trainers. His role has extended fate beyond working with his beloved clients, to now mentoring aspiring personal trainers, holding workshops and seminars, and writing for the nations personal training governing body, Physical Activity Australia. Come to the OBC seminars in Australia: sigmanutrition.com/australia
2/21/201946 minutes, 46 seconds
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SNR #268: Luke Leaman - Physiology, Nutrition From First Principles & Prioritising Health

Throughout recent years, Luke Leaman has become a prominent figure in the health and fitness industry. With a mantra of “Health Over Everything,” his teachings, research, and knowledge boldly reflect that. Luke has spent the last 9 years educating coaches, trainers, and health professionals around the world on biochemistry and physiology, with a large focus on the application of this knowledge. Earlier on in his career, Luke sought out the best in their fields to internship with, learn from, and work alongside. Luke has mentored under world-renowned Strength Coach Charles Poliquin, as well as Dr James Lavalle formally of the Lavalle Metabolic Institute, and author of Cracking the Metabolic Code. Over the years, Luke has focused his learning and education on the stress response in relation to fat gain, metabolic disruption, and performance. Through his knowledge, he has been able to help hundreds of clients get back to peak health when all hope had previously been lost. In September 2015 he began his mission with Muscle Nerds. His focus is to bring health back to the health and fitness industry, to help mould critically thinking, educated coaches, and to do so in a positive, encouraging, and enthusiastic manner. In This Episode We Discuss Why better health will lead to better performance Knowing the fundamentals of physiology to be a better coach Understanding nutrition and training from first principles The problem with relying on research without understanding basic physiology When diets stop working Tweaking dietary intake with increasing training workload Tracking simple metrics: resting heart rate, HRV, blood pressure, sleep, fasting blood glucose Purchase the Sigma Live Sessions at education.sigmanutrition.com
2/18/201959 minutes, 43 seconds
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SNR #267: Fiona Willer, AdvAPD - Health At Every Size, Non-Dieting & Weight-Neutral Approaches

Fiona is an Advanced Accredited Practising Dietitian (AdvAPD) and university lecturer in nutrition and dietetics. Her academic research areas are dietetic private practice benchmarking, interprofessional learning and HAES (Health At Every Size) integration into dietetics. Fiona has close to a decade of academic work under her belt and has been employed by Queensland University of Technology (QUT), Central Queensland University (CQU) and the University of the Sunshine Coast (USC). She will soon complete a PhD focusing on the clinical application of weight neutral approaches to weight concern in dietetics and it’s adoption into practice. Fiona’s mission is to empower health professionals to adopt weight neutral practice by providing support and training in how and why to do so. In This Episode We Discuss Defining Health At Every Size (HAES) Weight neutral program vs. weight loss program Benefits of non-diet approaches Long-term data on dieting Can obese patients still improve their health even if there is no weight loss? Problems with basing health status on bodyweight and/or BMI Striking the balance of knowing weight loss is beneficial with the potential that focusing solely on weight change can be contraindicated Intuituve eating   Access the Sigma Live Sessions: education.sigmanutrition.com  
2/11/20191 hour, 38 seconds
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SNR #266: Marty Kendall - Nutrient Optimiser, High-Satiety Diets & Carb/Fat Combinations

Marty is an engineer by trade but his passion is for researching and writing about nutrition topics over at his site optimisingnutrition.com. There he has created a framework for eating for health, which focuses on the intersection between energy density and nutrient density. He promotes maximizing micronutrient density of the diet, regardless of your dietary approach or goal. In This Episode We Discuss Nutrient optimiser Nutrient Density Challenge Satiety Hyperpalatability of carbohydrate and fat combinations Meal timing and TRF Micronutrient ratios EAT Lancet SIGMA LIVE SESSIONS: education.sigmanutrition.com
2/5/201949 minutes, 25 seconds
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SNR #265: Lessons From Experts - Prediabetes, Autophagy, Relative Energy Deficiency and Carbohydrate Periodization

The Sigma Live Sessions include four topic discussions on: 1) Dietary Interventions in Prediabetes & Diabetes - Nicola Guess, PhD 2) Fuelling Elite Sport Performance, Carbohydrate Periodization & Pracitioner Experiences - James Morton, PhD 3) Relative Energy Deficiency & Female Athlete Triad - Kirsty Elliot-Sale, PhD 4) Fasting for Health? Longevity, Autophagy and More - Martin MacDonald, MSc For full access to these sessions, go to: https://education.sigmanutrition.com
1/29/201929 minutes, 37 seconds
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SNR #264: Prof. Michael Ristow – Longevity, Mitochondria & Free Radicals

In This Episode We Discuss Role of mitochondria in lifespan regulation and prevention of metabolic diseases Health-promoting effects associated with: low caloric intake, reduced glucose metabolism, physical exercise, sirtuin signaling & more How Prof. Ristow’s findings go against the popular “free radical theory of aging” How increased formation of reactive oxygen species (ROS) within mitochondria can increase longevity ROS causing a vaccination-like adaptive response that culminates in increased stress resistance and extended longevity Mitochondrial hormesis or mitohormesis Human vs. non-human trials How do insulin, protein and resveratrol affect longevity? NAD Caloric restriction vs maintenance of lean physique for longevity Head of Institute of Translational Medicine at ETH Zurich and heads up the Energy Metabolism Laboratory. Prof. Ristow has been involved in research for many years examing Biochemistry and Physiology of Aging, Exercise, Obesity, Type 2 Diabetes. Prof. Ristow’s group are interested in the biochemical and molecular basis of longevity — in particular the role played by mitochondria in lifespan regulation and prevention of metabolic diseases. Contrary to the widely re-iterated ‘Free Radical Theory of Aging’, his group have been the first laboratory to show that the health-promoting effects associated with low caloric intake, physical exercise and other lifespan-extending interventions like sirtuin signaling are caused by increased formation of Reactive Oxygen Species (ROS) within the mitochondria, causing a vaccination-like adaptive response that culminates in increased stress resistance and extended longevity, a process called mitohormesis. AUSTRALIA SEMINARS: https://sigmanutrition.com/australia/
1/22/201944 minutes, 38 seconds
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SNR #263: Brenda Davy, PhD – Dietary Assessement Methods in Nutrition Research

Dr. Davy, is a Professor in the Department of Human Nutrition, Foods and Exercise at Virginia Tech. She conducts research investigating the role of diet and physical activity behaviors in the prevention and treatment of obesity and related comorbidities, beverage consumption and weight management, and dietary assessment methodologies. Dr. Davy received a BS in Nutrition in 1989 and an MS in Exercise Physiology in 1992 from Virginia Tech, and a PhD degree in Nutrition from Colorado State University in 2001. Dr. Davy is a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and The Obesity Society, and serves on the Board of Editors for the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. Her research has been supported by the National Institutes of Health. To date, she has published more than 100 peer-reviewed journal articles. At Virginia Tech, she directs the Laboratory for Eating Behaviors and Weight Management. In This Episode We Discuss Self-report measures: diet records (3-4 days), recalls, Food Frequency Questionnaires Limitations of typical self-report measures used in research Social desirability bias Do particular meals/diet habits cause more inaccurate reporting? How do the self-report methods try to minimize the degree of underreporting? Intake biomarkers: Urinary excretion, isotope-based methods, etc. Metabolomics Tech-based methods: wearables, cameras, Remote Food Photography Method (RFPM)
1/15/201951 minutes, 1 second
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SNR #262: Trevor Kashey, PhD – Thoughts on Science, Learning & Nutrition Practice

Trevor received a PhD in Biochemistry from the Univerisity of Arizona at the age of 23. Previous to that he completed his undergraduate degree whilst still in high school. He currently is the owner of Trevor Kashey Nutrition, where he works with an array of different people. Previous to that he was an owner of Relentless Dietetics. Trevor has competed in strongman and bodybuilding in the past, and has been the nutrition consultant to many athletes in those sports and other strength-based sports. Trevor is a lover of learning, science and critical thinking. Keep up-to-date with Danny's recommended content from around the web with the Sigma Synopsis weekly email: https://sigmanutrition.com/sigma-synopsis/
1/8/20191 hour, 2 minutes, 42 seconds
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SNR #261: Ari Snaevarsson – Eating Disorder Recovery, Body Positivity & Intuitive Eating

Ari Snaevarsson is a nutrition coach who works primarily with clients who suffer from disordered eating patterns. He also works as a dietetic technician at a residential eating disorder treatment center. In both capacities, he helps clients develop positive relationships with food and their bodies. His book, 100 Days of Food Freedom, outlines a simple, day-by-day process to recovery from one’s eating disorder. In This Episode We Discuss Commonalitites in recovery from the various eating disorders Defining recovery The factors that may increase the probability of that recovery being a success Critical nature of support systems How you can support a friend/family member recovering from an eating disorder Modification of environment and lifestyle Goal setting: what metrics can be assessed on an ongoing basis? Understanding relapses accurately Cognitive dietary restraint – dieting messages from the diet industry Body-positive, intuitive eating approach Health At Every Size (HAES) – misinterpretations and misconceptions  
1/1/20191 hour, 3 minutes, 42 seconds
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SNR #260: Steve Taylor, RD - Sustainable Results, Human Behaviour & Dietary Approaches

Steve Taylor is a registered dietitian and lifestyle coach who through sustainable behavior changes elicits positive lifestyle transformations in, and with his clients. Steve has a Master’s Degree in Dietetics, Nutrition, and Exercise Physiology. This formal training, combined with a decade of experience, has equipped him with powerful tools, skills, and strategies which he now teaches and shares with others. In addition to his own coaching practice, Steve is the registered dietitian for 3D Muscle Journey. Originally from Kansas City, Missouri, Steve now resides in Los Angeles, California. In This Episode We Discuss Philosophy to coaching The issue of weight re-gain and loss of adherence Understanding client motivation and attitudes Sustainable diet methods Balancing sustainability with methods that can get rapid results Messages in the dieting industry that are particulary damaging
12/27/201845 minutes, 34 seconds
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SNR #259: Chad Kerksick, PhD - Energy Availability and Pre-Exercise Protein vs. Fasted Training

Chad Kerksick, PhD currently works as an Assistant Professor of Exercise Science and Director of Graduate Programs in the School of Sport, Recreation and Exercises for Lindenwood University in St. Charles, MO. He received his PhD in Exercise, Nutrition and Preventive Health from Baylor University, a Masters degree in Exercise and Sport Science at the University of Memphis and a Bachelor’s degree in Health and Exercise Science at Truman State University. He is certified as a strength and conditioning specialist by the National Strength and Conditioning Association and as an athletic trainer by the National Athletic Trainers Association and recognized as a Fellow of the American College of Sports Medicine and International Society of Sports Nutrition. Chad’s previous research work has focused upon studying the impact of exercise and nutrition on numerous aspects of health and performance and from this work he has published over 70 articles in peer-reviewed scientific journals, given over 100 research presentations, authored multiple chapters, one book on nutrient timing and recently edited a book on Sport Nutrition Needs of Child and Adolescent Athletes. In This Episode We Discuss Energy availability in athletes Fasted cardio vs. pre-exercise protein ingestion
12/24/201841 minutes, 49 seconds
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SNR #258: Dan Garner – Building an Online Business as a Nutrition Coach

Dan Garner is the owner and founder of Team Garner and is the head strength coach and nutrition specialist for hockeytraining.com. Specializing and delivering consistent world class results in physique transformation and athletic performance, Dan has worked with many athletes from the youth leagues right up to the NHL, NFL, MLB and UFC. He is an international lecturer on sports nutrition and has been featured in several major media outlets. In This Episode We Discuss How Dan built a successful online nutrition business after being a successful personal trainer Coaches transition their skills online Lacking clarity over what to do Coaches lacking confidence in either themselves or the process/plan Why wanting to make money is a good thing Optimizing time and productivity the 2-3 pieces of low-hanging fruit for a coach out there who wants to build success online
12/18/201846 minutes, 6 seconds
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SNR #257: Andrew Jagim, PhD – Pre-Workout Supplementation: Current Evidence & Recommendations

Andrew is currently an Assistant Professor of Exercise Science in the Exercise & Performance Nutrition Laboratory at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. In the near future, Andrew will be changing jobs as he will soon be serving as the Director of Sport Medicine Research for a satellite health system of Mayo Clinic in La Crosse, Wisconsin. Andrew earned his Bachelor’s degree in Physical Education and Exercise Science at the University of North Dakota. He went on to complete a Master’s degree in Human Performance at the University of Wisconsin – La Crosse. He later completed his PhD in Kinesiology with an emphasis in Exercise Physiology at Texas A&M University, working under Dr. Richard Kreider in the Exercise and Sport Nutrition Lab. His primary research area focuses on the use of different nutritional and training strategies to improve measures of performance and health which has led to several publications in peer reviewed journals and has presented at multiple national conference events. He currently is investigating the prevalence of use and supplementation habits of pre-workout supplement users in addition to monitoring changes in energy availability and body composition throughout a season in several team sport athletes. Andrew is also a co-host for the podcast Clinically Pressed. In This Episode We Discuss Caffeine Beta-alanine Sodium bicarbonate Citrulline Beetroot juice Making sure no banned substances found in your supplement Which compounds are likely to benefit each type of sport What steps to take to get the best quality product
12/12/201852 minutes, 11 seconds
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SNR #256: Alex Leaf – Risks of High-Protein Diets?: Longevity, Gut Health & Microbiota

Alex holds a master’s degree in Nutrition from Bastyr University. He is a full-time researcher at Examine.com involved in updating the supplement database, editing ERD articles, and blogging about nutrition. Alex also teaches young minds about human nutrition and functional medicine at the University of Western States. He enjoys blending the scientific aspects of nutrition with the pragmatic realities of life to help others achieve their goals. In This Episode We Discuss Potential controversies in how protein influences human health Hypothesis of protein restriction (and methionine restriction) benefitting longevity via impact on mTOR and AMPK Extrapolating animal data to humans: limits and conclusions Does protein restriction actually increase human lifespan? How do we balance the potential benefit of protein restriction with the known benefits of high-protein intakes for muscle mass and function? Are high-protein intakes detrimental for gut health and/or the gut microbiome? How other dietary components can mitigate the negative impacts of protein on gut health How cooking methods may influence the imapct of protein-rich foods on health Knowing the potential risks of a high-protein diet Cost:benefit analysis of protein intake Support the podcast at: patreon.com/sigmanutrition
12/4/20181 hour, 3 minutes, 29 seconds
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SNR #255: Alan Flanagan – Public Health Nutrition & the Role of Epidemiology

Alan is a qualified lawyer and nutritionist based in Dublin, Ireland. Alan has a Masters in Nutritional Medicine from the University of Surrey. And in 2019 he will be starting his PhD work at the same institution, focusing on chrononutrition. In This Episode We Discuss: Public health messaging vs. individual advice Barriers to better nutrition at the population level What policies could make a difference? Do we know what a healthy dietary pattern is? Addressing criticisms of nutritional epidemiology Understanding the hierarchy of evidence: quality of evidence vs. proof standards
11/27/20181 hour, 40 minutes, 38 seconds
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SNR 254: Nutrition for Health, Body Composition & Performance (My OPEX Podcast)

Danny is interviewed by Robbie Bourke of OPEX on a range of topics related to the fundamentals of evidence-based nutrition. Instagram: @dannylennon_sigma
11/19/20181 hour, 47 minutes, 54 seconds
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SNR #253: Listener Q&A

Danny answers questions submitted by podcast listeners. To submit yours, go to sigmanutrition.com/question
11/12/201846 minutes, 3 seconds
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SNR #252: Alpana Shukla, MD – Effect of Food Order on the Glycaemic Response

Dr Shukla is an Assistant Professor of Research in Medicine at Weill Cornell Medical College and an Assistant Attending Physician at New-York Presbyterian Hospital. Dr Shukla’s clinical interests and expertise include management of obesity and related metabolic complications including type 2 diabetes. Dr Shukla obtained her medical degrees, MBBS and MD, from and completed internal medicine residency at Grant Medical College & J J Group of Hospitals in Mumbai, India. She subsequently trained in the UK as a senior house officer in Medicine, Specialist Registrar and Clinical Fellow in Endocrinology and as Registrar in Clinical Pharmacology in Australia over the next 5 years. While in the UK, she completed the training and examination requirements and was granted the MRCP(UK) degree. Dr. Shukla is currently the Director of Clinical Research at the Comprehensive Weight Control Center. A key area of Dr. Shukla’s research is a novel behavioral intervention, termed “food order,” for regulation of blood glucose in individuals with overweight /obesity, type 2 diabetes, and prediabetes In This Episode We Discuss Trials conducted examing the glycaemic response to food order “Carbohydrate-last meal pattern” Typical mixed meals where the components are not as easily separated Impact of fiber before ingestion of a main meal How these strategies compare to a protein pre-load Impact on ghrelin and GLP-1 How does all this research apply to real world recommendations for prediabetes and diabetes SNR LIVE: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
11/6/201847 minutes, 8 seconds
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SNR #251: What Is Science?

In this episode Danny discusses the concept of “what is science?” with input from: Andy Galpin, PhD Brad Dieter, PhD John Kiely Trent Stellingwerf, PhD Mike T Nelson, PhD Ciaran O’ Regan In This Episode We Discuss What is science meant to be? What is science pragmatically? “Science doesn’t prove anything it just reduces uncertainty” If you want to know something better, it takes concentrated cognitive effort and thinking. Wrestle with difficult ideas. Don’t just consume What information do you have that you can collect, how does that inform your mental model? And how do you test that model Crucially, how do you disprove that model? Application: explicit vs. tacit knowledge. (Tacit = coach intuition) Adding that knowledge to a larger body of evidence You don’t identified as your views, but as the being that has certain views that are subject to change Far important how you think than what you think
10/29/201838 minutes, 15 seconds
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SNR #250: Mike T Nelson, PhD - Metabolic Flexibility Revisited

Mike has a PhD in exercise physiology from the University of Minnesota, with that work focusing on the concept of metabolic flexibility. In addition, he has a MS in biomechanics and an adjunct professor and a member of the American College of Sports Medicine. In This Episode We Discuss How to correctly think about metabolic flexibility Metabolic flexibility in adipose and muscle tissue Fuel use in type 2 diabetes Why ketogenic diets do not increase metabolic flexibility What drives metabolic inflexibility Metabolic flexibility pathways are therapeutic targets for metabolic diseases SNR LIVE NOV. 24th: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
10/22/201851 minutes, 35 seconds
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SNR #249: James Clear - Habits & Behaviour Change

  On his blog James primarily writes on how we can create better habits, make better decisions, and live better lives. He combines ideas from a wide range of disciplines including biology, neuroscience, psychology, philosophy, and more. He is the author of Atomic Habits, the creator of the Habits Academy, a weightlifter, and a travel photographer in over 30 countries. In This Episode We Discuss Where James’ interest in habits stemmed from The meaning behind “Atomic Habits” Where to start when deciding what habits to change? How do we stick we these new habits? How to help others (clients/patients) build new habits Environment design: things that act as obstacles that we may not be aware of Preventing loss of momentum when schedule or environment is thrown off, for example shift work or travel How long to build a new habit? And does it matter?   Buy tickets for Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE! here:  http://sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
10/16/201849 minutes, 12 seconds
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SNR #248: Kyra Bobinet, MD – Behaviour Change Through Design Thinking

When it comes to health engagement, Dr. Bobinet has 5 words of advice: be caring, authentic, and useful. As the CEO-founder of engagedIN, Kyra devotes her life to helping people crack the code of how, what, and especially, WHY we engage. Kyra has founded several healthcare start-ups, spanning behavior health, population health, and mobile health. She has designed behavior change programs, big data algorithms, billion dollar products, mobile health apps, and evidence-based studies in mind-body and metabolic medicine. All of her designs, whether for at-risk teens or seniors, are rooted in the belief that true caring is our greatest value. Dr. Bobinet teaches at Stanford School of Medicine on patient engagement and empowerment, and health design with Dr. Larry Chu, founder of MedicineX. She has studied in Dr. BJ Fogg’s Persuasive Tech Lab at Stanford, whom she credits as the founder of “behavior design”. Dr. Bobinet received her Masters in Public Health at Harvard University, specializing in Healthcare Management, Technology-enabled Behavior Change, and Population Health Management. She received her medical degree from the UCSF School of Medicine. In This Episode We Discuss What design thinking is, in relation to behaviour change Not letting a failure/lack of progress lead to abandonment of trying Modifying eating habits and behaviours Dealing with deeply embedded “programs” that subciously affect our ability to change Negative self-image in the fitness industry Motivation in the behaviour change process Those who self-doubt what they can achieve: “oh other people can do that, but I wouldn’t be able to” . ATTEND SIGMA NUTRITION RADIO LIVE: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
10/9/201844 minutes, 2 seconds
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SNR #247: John Kiely – Scepticism, Cognitive Bias & Applying Science to Practice

John is Senior Lecturer in Elite Performance at the Institute of Coaching & Performance at the University of Central Lancashire. He has published a long list of peer-reviewed work, notably on stress and periodization, and is well known for questioning conventional dogmas withing strength & conditioning literature and practice. John’s career within sport has been relatively varied, having experienced life as an international competitor, coach, sports scientist and strength and conditioning specialist. He has been the head of S&C at UK athletics, a S&C coach to Olympic medallists & world champions, as well as working with teams at both Rugby & Soccer World Cups. In This Episode We Discuss Issues translating research into practice How is a critical thinking mindset fostered/developed/trained? Scepticism vs. nihilism Cognitive bias: pitfalls for coaches or practitioners SNR LIVE: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
10/2/201850 minutes, 33 seconds
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SNR #246: Jamie Pugh, PhD – Gastrointestinal Symptoms in Athletes

Jamie Pugh is a post-doctoral research at Liverpool John Moores University. During his PhD and current work, he has looked at the effect exercise can have on the gastrointestinal system and in more recent work, looked at the effects probiotic supplementation can have on endurance athletes. He has also worked as a consultant nutritionist and physiologist for a number of professional teams and extreme endurance athletes. In This Episode We Discuss The range and severity of symptoms athletes experience Causes of symptoms: physiological, mechanical and nutritional Individual variation in susceptibility to symptoms Lack of association between gut “damage” and symptoms experienced GI distress outside of endurance sport Maximal rates of glucose ingestion: higher than previously thought? Effect of glutamine supplementation Effect of probiotic supplementation Effect of low FODMAP diets Practical steps for practitioners and athletes to mitigate risk JOIN ME IN DUBLIN! Come to Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE on November 24th. Tickets on sale now: http://sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
9/25/201855 minutes, 43 seconds
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SNR #245: Artin Entezarjou, MD – Simplifying Science & Interpreting Research

Artin is a medical doctor, currently completing his intern rotations at Helsingborg Hospital, Sweden. He is also currently completing a PhD in Artificial Intelligence in eVisits in Primary Care. Outside of medicine, Artin co-founded EBT (Evidence Based Training), a brand dedicated to making science on health, fitness and nutrition digestible and understandable to the public, mostly through Instagram, but also their blog. In This Episode We Discuss What it means to simplify science How to have a discussion, levels of argument Study types: expert opinions, observational, experimental. Reading studies: what to be looking out for Translating research into practice Understanding statistics in research: p-value, confidence intervals Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE! Tickets: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
9/18/201848 minutes, 40 seconds
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SNR #244: Ian Dunican, PhD – Sleep & Impact of Weight Cutting

Ian is currently the Director and Principal Consultant of Melius Consulting and has a PhD from the University of Western Australia (UWA), where he worked with elite sporting organisations/athletes to optimise sleep, recovery and performance. He is also the Director of Sleep4Performance and an Adjunct Researcher at Monash University, Australia. Ian has worked with elite and highly trained athletes at the Australian Institute of Sport (AIS), West Australian Institute of Sport (WAIS), professional teams in Super Rugby, Australian Rules Football, Basketball, Swimming, Ultrarunners and Martial Arts such as Boxing, & MMA. He is an ultrarunner, completing over 20 ultramarathons to date including the Ultra Trail Australia ~100km (7 times), Leadville~100 miler, numerous other marathons and trail running events. He is a Brazilian Jiu Jitsu Purple belt and enjoys cross training in wrestling, Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) and kettlebells. He is now focusing on improving his swimming to undertake open water swimming events in 2018/19. He was a TEDx Perth speaker in 2017. He has co-authored technical reports, guidelines for industry organisations and authored a number of scientific articles and is a regular reviewer for scientific peer reviewed journals. Ian is the host of Sleep4Performance radio a podcast dedicated to education, knowledge sharing and promotion of the value of managing sleep. In This Episode We Discuss Weight cutting study: impact on sleep Does low fibre dieting lead to worse sleep? Effects of caloric restriction on sleep Impact of anxiety and nervousness on week of competition Brain trauma and sleep Demands for sleep with increased training workload Impact of late night training Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE! in Dublin: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
9/11/201844 minutes, 53 seconds
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SNR #243: Valentin Tambosi - Time Frames for Natural Bodybuilders

Valentin is a pro natural bodybuilder and coach based in Vienna, Austria. He has been working as a personal trainer and physique coach for several years. As an athlete he is a professional natural bodybuilder with the IPE. Valentin is also a speaker at Intelligent Strength for their Strength Coach program. In This Episode We Discuss Ideal body composition at the start of a contest prep Recommended length of contest prep for natural athletes How competition frequency should change with experience level Off-season length and building in mini-cuts Strategic use of diet breaks during prep Understanding conditioning: how lean is “lean enough”? Weekly refeeds: setting the correct duration Peak week carbohydrate intake: front-loading vs. back-loading, and other considerations Come to Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE! in Dublin this November: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live
9/6/201853 minutes, 52 seconds
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Special Announcement: Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE!

Tickets: http://sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/ Four true world-class experts in the world of nutritional sciences will join SNR host Danny Lennon for a day of deep-diving conversations on the most cutting-edge and important topics in nutrition. Joining Danny on stage will be: --> Martin MacDonald - Mac-Nutrition --> Kirsty Elliot-Sale, PhD - NTU --> James Morton, PhD - Team Sky & LJMU --> Nicola Guess, PhD, RD - King's College, London TICKET INFO: http://sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
9/4/20185 minutes, 1 second
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#242: Jake Mey, PhD, RD – How Much Sugar is Too Much?

Jake is a registered dietitan and a human nutrition researcher. His work focuses on diet, muscle & metabolism. He is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow in Integrated Physiology and Molecular Medicine at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center. He is also a contractor in Inflammation and Immunity research at the renowned Cleveland Clinic. In This Episode We Discuss Understanding evidence-based research Can sugar, without caloric excess, still have detrimental health effects? Cleveland Clinic study: effect of wholegrains vs. refined grains on glucose metabolism How much sugar counts as a ‘high intake’? At what intakes we see issues Insulin resistance, AGEs and other issues Sigma Nutrition Radio LIVE! - Event in Dublin: sigmanutrition.com/snr-live/
8/28/20181 hour, 9 minutes, 40 seconds
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SNR #241: Elise Facer-Childs – Circadian Phenotypes, Brain Function & Athletic Performance

Elise Facer-Childs is currently a Doctoral Researcher working at the University of Birmingham on sleep, circadian rhythms and neuroimaging. She works with human participants to uncover the impact that our body clocks can have on brain structure and function, genetics, physiology and performance. Elise has presented her research at an International Conference for the European Biological Rhythms Society (EBRS)/World Chronobiology Congress (WCC) and has given presentations at the UK’s largest circadian conferences (UK Clock Club). In This Episode We Discuss Understanding circadian phenotypes Neuroimaging (fMRI) to understand how the brain is affected by time of day Time of day vs. time relative to internal circadian clock Practical implications for “night owls” and “morning larks” Personal best performance times differ significantly between circadian phenotypes Circadian phase shifting http://sigmanutrition.com/sigma-synopsis/
8/21/20181 hour, 4 minutes, 13 seconds
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SNR #240: Erica Goldstein, RD – Exercise-Associated Anemia, Hepcidin Activity & Implications for Athletes

Erica is a registered dietitian, currently completing a PhD at the University of Central Florida in Orlando. Previously she was employed as a Clinical and Sports Dietitian at the Mayo Clinic in Jacksonville, Florida, where Erica provided individual sports nutrition consultation to endurance and team sport athletes, in addition to providing care and educating oncology patients in the hospital. She has a M.A. in Exercise Science and Health Promotion from FAU, in addition to a B.S. in Nutrition and Dietetics from UNF. She is also a Certified Strength and Conditioning Specialist with the NSCA, and a Certified Sports Nutritionist with the ISSN. In This Episode We Discuss Defining iron deficiency and iron deficiency anaemia Iron-deficiency anaemia: diagnosis and symptoms Why is iron so crucial for athlete performance? The role of hepcidin Dilutional pseudoanaemia Heel strike hemolysis How sources of iron differ in quality or bio-availability Supplementation: dosage, forms, etc.
8/13/201853 minutes, 26 seconds
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SNR #239: Carl Juneau, PhD – Does Muscle Damage Actually Cause Hypertrophy?

Carl is an exercise scientist with a PhD in physical activity epidemiology. He is also the founder of the Dr. Muscle app. In This Episode We Discuss Influence of mechanical tension, muscle damage and metabolic stress on hypertrophy Does muscle damage really cause hypertrophy? Research for and against muscle damage being important. Practical implications Volume vs. mechanical tension
8/6/20181 hour, 1 minute, 55 seconds
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SNR #238: Andi & Alex Pürzel – Behind Intelligent Strength

Andi and Alex are the guys behind Intelligent Strength, a company that produces education on strength training and body composition through seminars and books. The brothers also have a gym in Vienna, Austria; Das Gym. Das Gym is a truly unique place. And when you talk to Alex & Andi you immediately understand why. The gym opened in 2016 and it’s hard to imagine there being another place like it on the planet. Andi has a long career as a coach and educator. As an athlete he first competed in strongman and powerlifting, and in more recent years has competed in bodybuilding. Alex, in addition to his work with Intelligent Strength, also works as a physical education teacher at a school in Vienna. As an athlete, he has competed in powerlifting for a long-time. This has included competing at several IPF world championships and winning Gold in the deadlift at the European championships. In This Episode We Discuss Alex and Andi’s childhood influences What got them into lifting weights Experiences as coaches and athletes Lessons training can teach you about life What the goals of Intelligent Strength are
7/17/201846 minutes, 2 seconds
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SNR #237: Martin MacDonald – The Influences, Experiences & Journey of an Industry Leader

sigmanutrition.com/mnu Martin is a clinical performance nutritionist and the founder of Mac-Nutrition, a thriving nutrition consultancy boasting sought after long-term internship and weekend mentorship programs. He has also developed Mac-Nutrition Uni, the UK’s first ever evidence-based, nutrition course that can be completed online. Martin has worked as a performance nutritionist in elite sport with British Weight Lifting, Derby County Football Club, English swimming and other elite sport organizations. He has lectured at the University of Derby and has guest lectured on the prestigious MSc Sport and Exercise Nutrition course at Loughborough University. In This Episode We Discuss Martin’s undergraduate education What drew Martin to nutrition The early life influences that developed interests in bodybuilding or in science The moments/experiences in his education that stand out as the most important or influential to Martin Martin’s work in elite sport How Martin had became disillusioned with the fitness industry before he started MNU The unexpected benefits students have reported from doing MNU Martin’s interests outside of nutrition/work sigmanutrition.com/mnu
7/10/20181 hour, 16 minutes, 29 seconds
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SNR #236: Kevin Ashworth, MSc - Understanding Anxiety & How To Deal With It

Kevin received his Bachelor’s in Psychology from Washington State University, before completing his Masters Degree in Counseling Psychology at Pacific University. His focus remained on anxiety and models for working with children, which led to completing anxiety focused training during his tenure at Pacific University. During this time, he authored three publications on anxiety and completed his dissertation on the effectiveness of Collaborative Problem Solving. Kevin has earned certification in treating OCD and Hoarding Disorder from the International Obsessive Compulsive Disorder Foundation (IOCDF) Behavior Therapy Training Institute (BTTI). Though he has presented at local and national conferences, he has found his true calling with public speaking on the topic of anxiety, often being recruited for providing lectures and workshops in the Portland community. ​ Kevin aims to provide effective, evidence-based treatment to individuals struggling with anxiety disorders using humor, kindness, and compassion. He believes Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is effective when he is able to help clients shift their relationship with anxiety while not taking themselves too seriously. Kevin likes to empower his clients by saying (in regards to Exposure Response Prevention) “you’re already miserable, you may as well be miserable on purpose.” In This Episode We Discuss Defining anxiety accurately “Am I doing the action based on fear or preference?” How to not be crippled by uncertainty Relationship between anxiety and depression Exposure therapy and evidence-based strategies used in practice Focused on the past: feelings of guilt, shame, perhaps depression. How do we prevent ruminating on things that happened in the past?
7/3/201856 minutes, 4 seconds
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SNR #235: Ciaran O’ Regan – Combat Sports Weight Regain After Weigh-in (Research Breakdown)

Ciaran has a BSc. in Sport & Exercise Science from the University of Limerick. He currently is a strength & conditioning coach in Cork, Ireland and works online with combat sport athletes on their nutrition and fight prep here at Sigma Nutrition. He has experience as a fighter himself, competing at a national-level for many years in amateur boxing, as well as competing in kickboxing, K1 and BJJ. Paper Reviewed: Silveira-Coswig et al., 2018 – Weight Regain, But Not Weight Loss, Is Related to Competitive Success in Real-life Mixed Martial Arts Competition sigmanutrition.com/weightcut
6/26/201853 minutes, 9 seconds
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SNR #234: Lachlan Mitchell, RD – Natural Bodybuilding Research & Muscle Dysmorphia

Lachlan Mitchell, RD, PhD Candidate As a qualified dietitian Lachlan has worked both in the public and private health systems at Hervey Bay Hospital, Hunter New England Diabetes Service and a private weight loss clinic in Newcastle. It was in these settings Lachlan provided high quality, evidence based nutrition advice to a variety of patient groups, including intensive care, cardiology, diabetes, paediatrics and weight loss. Lachlan has held numerous positions in the academic world. He spent time at Australian Catholic University as a lecturer and tutor teaching a nutrition and exercise unit as part of the exercise science degree program. Whilst living in Ireland he was head-hunted by Athlone Institute of Technology to co-write the course curriculum and syllabus for many units of study for a new exercise physiology degree. Lachlan has also spent time at University of New South Wales tutoring in physical activity and health. Lachlan is currently undertaking a PhD in metabolism and bodybuilding at the University of Sydney.
6/19/201854 minutes, 27 seconds
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SNR #233: Bryce Lewis - Athlete Development, Identity & Psychology

Bryce is the founder of The Strength Athlete and is a world-class elite-level powerlifter in the IPF. Bryce competes in the -105 kg class, winning USAPL Raw Nationals in both 2016 and 2017, as well as winning silver at the IPF World Championships in Minsk in 2017. Through his success as an elite lifter, Bryce’s dream is to pass on his knowledge and skills through The Strength Athlete (TSA) powerlifting coaching services online. Bryce passionately advocates for the application and love of the sciences, evidence-based philosophies, and skepticism of pseudoscience. Off the back of his 2017 Raw Nationals win with a 890 kg total (315/220/355), Bryce will again represent the USA at IPF Worlds this year in Calgary, Canada. In This Episode We Discuss Preparing for world championships Modifications made over the past year How some weight loss has helped deadlift leverage for Bryce Family background of athleticism, How was that cultivated as you grew up? exploring how psychology and sport psychology practices can affect lifting how thinking about athlete development is not simply about how do we increase physical performance through training Is there a distinction between building a better athlete and a better person? What Bryce has improved on to become a